Laboring at his computer ten hours a day for five years—creating exquisitely detailed 3-D models of the Pyramid's interior—Houdin finally had his answer. It was a startling revelation that cast a fresh light on the minds that conceived one of the wonders of the ancient world.
Written by world-renowned Egyptologist Bob Brier in collaboration with Houdin, The Secret of the Great Pyramid moves deftly between the ancient and the modern, chronicling two equally fascinating interrelated histories. It is a remarkable account of the step-by-step planning and assembling of the magnificent edifice—the brainchild of an innovative genius, the Egyptian architect Hemienu, who imagined, organized, and oversaw a monumental construction project that took more than two decades to complete and that employed the services of hundreds of architects, mathematicians, boatbuilders, stonemasons, and metallurgists. Here also is the riveting story of Jean-Pierre Houdin's single-minded search for solutions to the mysteries that have bedeviled Egyptologists for centuries, such as the purpose of the enigmatic Grand Gallery and the Pyramid's crack.
What is the Great Pyramid of Giza? Ask that basic question of a traditional Egyptologist, and you get the basic, traditional answer: a fancy tombstone for a self-important pharaoh of the Old Kingdom. This, Egyptologists argue, is the sole finding based on the data, and the only deduction supported by science.
By implication, anyone who dissents from this point of view is unscientific and woolly-minded-a believer in magic and ghosts. Indeed, some of the unconventional ideas about the Great Pyramid do have a spectacularly fabulous ring to them. Yet from beneath the obvious terms of this controversy, a deeper, more significant question arises: how is it that the Great Pyramid exercises such a gripping hold on the human psyche- adding cryptic grace to the back of the one-dollar bill and framing myriad claims of New Age "pyramid power"?
In Pyramid Quest, Robert M. Schoch and Robert Aquinas McNally use the rigorous intellectual analysis of scientific inquiry to investigate what we know about the Great Pyramid, and develop a stunning hypothesis: This ancient monument is the strongest proof yet that civilization began thousands of years earlier than is generally thought, extending far back into a little-known time. In tracing that story, we come to understand not only the Great Pyramid but also our own origins as civilized beings.