Mastaba vs Pyramid: Difference and Comparison

The pyramids are a mysterious part of the history of Egypt. The pyramids and tombs made by the Egyptians are very interesting to know about.

The pyramids were mostly constructed for higher-ranking people of society, like pharaohs. The tombs made for people lower in rank in comparison to the kings and empires are called mastabas.

Here are some differences between the Mastaba and the pyramids, which are the major interesting part.

Key Takeaways

  1. Mastabas are flat-roofed, rectangular structures made from mud bricks used as ancient Egyptian tombs.
  2. Pyramids are monumental structures with triangular sides converging to a single point, also used as tombs in ancient Egypt.
  3. Pyramids evolved from mastabas and are considered more architecturally advanced and iconic.

 Mastaba vs Pyramid

Mastabas and pyramids are both ancient Egyptian tombs. Mastabas are flat-roofed structures with sloping sides, while pyramids are geometrically shaped monuments with triangular faces meeting at a point.

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Mastaba vs Pyramid

The mastabas were tombs. These were rectangular in structure and had a low height.

The mastabas are flat-topped tombs. These were made up of mud bricks and stones.

So these were more prone to damage. These were made with the purpose of protecting the buried bodies from scavenger animals and grave robbers. 

The pyramids were high triangular-shaped tombs. Not only tombs but pyramids were also made for religious purposes.

The pyramids were high in height. There are many types of pyramids found in Egypt.

The Great Pyramid of Giza is the ancient and largest pyramid. It is one of the Seven Wonders of the World.

Comparison Table

Parameters of ComparisonMastabaPyramid
DefinitionThese were built as tombsThese were built for religious beliefs as well as tombs
ShapeRectangular in shapeTriangular in shape
Made ofMud bricks and stonesStones and bricks
SizeRelatively lower and have flat tipHigh in range and have pointed tip
First made on3100 BC2780 BC

What is Mastaba?

The mastabas were a kind of tombs. These were rectangular in structure and had a low height.

The mastabas are flat-topped tombs. These were made up of mud bricks and stones.

So these were more prone to damage. These were made with the purpose of protecting the buried bodies from scavenger animals and grave robbers. 

The afterlife is one of the important beliefs in Egyptian culture. They believe that after the death of a person, the soul needs the body to stay.

So they tried and succeeded in preserving the body to have the soul stay. They also believed that the person needs all the commodities the person used in life, even after death.

So the mastabas built had a door for the priests and relatives to go to the tomb and provide the food, beer, and other accessories needed. Some tombs were filled with precious items like gold, diamonds, precious gems, etc., so they were developed into mastabas to save them from grave robbers.

The scavenger animals also dig the grave and disturb the body. So these mastabas were built to save the body so that the soul could rest.

mastaba

What is Pyramid?

The pyramids were high triangular-shaped tombs. Not only tombs but the pyramids were also made for religious purposes.

The pyramids were high in height. There are many types of pyramids found in Egypt.

The Great Pyramid of Giza is the ancient and largest pyramid. It is one of the Seven Wonders of the World.

The pyramids were constructed with stones and bricks and were very strong. The stones used to build the pyramid were granite or similar types.

When sun rays fall on the pyramids, these stones reflect the light, and the pyramid glitters. Sometimes stones were also plated with gold for similar purposes.

The pyramids were made with keeping the similarity of the ray of the sun. This was believed that the departed soul travels on the sunray towards heaven.

Pyramids also exist in many other countries except Egypt; some of them are Nigeria, Greece, Spain, China, etc. the first pyramid was constructed in 2780 BC. Pyramids were mostly constructed for the tombs of pharaohs.

The pharaohs are the empire of ancient Egypt. They were respected as the representatives of God and were believed that they travel on the sun’s rays towards heaven after their death.

Most of the pyramids were full of precious gems, gold, diamond, etc., which were given for the comfort of the pharaoh in the afterlife.

pyramid

Main Differences Between Mastaba and Pyramid

  1. The mastabas were built as tombs. On the other hand, the pyramids were built for religious beliefs as well as tombs for some purposes. The pyramids were mainly built for important people in society.
  2. The shapes of the mastabas are rectangular. On the other hand, the shapes of the pyramids are triangular with any polygon on the base.
  3. The mastabas are made up of mud bricks and stones. On the other hand, the pyramids were made up of stones and bricks. So the pyramids are stronger and are less prone to damage. Some pyramids were also plated with gold so that they were visible from a distance by their shine.
  4. The mastabas are flat-topped and are lower in height. On the other hand, the pyramids are higher and have a pointed tip. The mastabas were roughly modern, one stored house height.
  5. The first mastaba was made in 3100 BC, and the first pyramid was constructed in 2780 BC by an Egyptian pharaoh.
Difference Between Mastaba and Pyramid
References
  1. https://ebm.bmj.com/content/21/4/125.short
  2. https://www.researchgate.net/profile/Joan-Ogden/publication/246727904_Pyramid_Methods_in_Image_Processing/links/544006600cf21227a11ba140/Pyramid-Methods-in-Image-Processing.pdf

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