Yeah, Khufu’s Cartouches in the Great Pyramid of Giza are Genuine

Recently, I have heard the surprisingly common whine that Khufu’s tomb is neither Khufu’s nor a tomb. Needless to say, this claim is ridiculous; a cartouche of Khufu painted by the builders of the Great Pyramid has been found in a Great Pyramid relieving chamber (Campbell’s chamber, the top-most). See here for original sketch (not meant to be a photograph!) of the cartouche bearing the name “Khufu”. See here and here for photographs of this cartouche. See here for a video of this cartouche. The marks on the west end of Nelson’s Chamber preserve Khufu’s Horus name, Medjedu. Khufu’s full birth name, Khnum-Khuf, is mentioned several times in Lady Arbuthnot’s chamber. Apparently, one cartouche bears only the name Khnum, though it must be remembered the Vyse sketches are not always reliable. For a debunking of nonsense regarding the epigraphy of the inscriptions, see here.

Also, mummies have been found in pyramids-parts of the body of Neferefre have been found in his pyramid, the mummy of Sesheshet has been found in her pyramid, and, apparently, the body of Iput I has been found in her pyramid. Others have probably been found before, but I am no Egyptologist and I do not know of them. In any case, there is no doubt the Old and Middle Kingdom pyramids are tombs, no matter how many bodies have been relocated in the several thousand years between the end of the Middle Kingdom and the nineteenth century.

Author: pithom

An atheist with an interest in the history of the ancient Near East. Author of the Against Jebel al-Lawz Wordpress blog.

35 thoughts on “Yeah, Khufu’s Cartouches in the Great Pyramid of Giza are Genuine”

  1. It can easily proven that the glyphs are 19th century forgeries. I personally know of someone who can easily get behind the wall and add a glyph. No aliens needed either. I don’t undestand why any educated person would not see something fishy here. No scientific method just believing this nonsense of geniun glyphs writen by illiterate quarry shlubs. No glyphs in the first chamber and 18th dynasty glyphs everywhere else. Common. I do NOT support nor have read any Sitchun works.

  2. It can easily proven that the glyphs are 19th century forgeries.

    -Are you claiming they are? If so, please do prove these glyphs are 19th century forgeries.

    I personally know of someone who can easily get behind the wall and add a glyph.


    No scientific method just believing this nonsense of geniun glyphs writen by illiterate quarry shlubs.

    -I might consider adding a note to the Comment Policy prohibiting logical fallacies. That’s a straw man if I ever saw one. Also, you’re close to violating Point 2 of my Comment Policy. While the literate population of Egypt was undoubtedly small, it would make sense for heads of work teams to add glyphs for identification of each block.

    No glyphs in the first chamber and 18th dynasty glyphs everywhere else.

    -What do you mean by “everywhere else”? You do appear to be right that no hieroglyphs were found in Davison’s chamber.
    Also, why would forgers make such crummy sketches of what they were forging and the graffiti be “obscured by incrustations” and, sometimes, upside down?

    1. I will provide the evidence when I gain access to the chambers and completely photograph and document everything. I also will get measurements of the areas that are supposedly unreacheable for my engineer friend who will then recreate this feat and prove those glyphs (behind the wall) can be added after construction. Partly ubscured glyphs and sloppy writing make me suspicious. Like they were making the point of these glyphs being in hard to reach places, upside down and obscured.

      I’m not saying this is not Khufu’s tomb. Just that these glyphs were added in the 19th century by people who probably thought it was not a big deal to try to prove something everyone aggreed with anyway. And everyone who is familiar with archaeology knows there were alot of crooked things happening in the begining days, theft, sabotage and even murder.

      I appologise for breaking some policy. Question. If Khufu did not put his name(s) on or in the pyramid to allow the geometry to speak for him, why would some most likey illiterate be allowed to? Even the head of work teams were most likey illiterate as well. What a way to dishomour and insult your king by writing his name.

      Forged glyphs do not mean the pyramid is not what it is. They should be seen as this.

      People placed in the smaller newer pyramids I can accept. My ptoblem is that the large ones a simply too big and precice for the time period. The only place to look is in the past.


    2. You know for certain that these people were literate? How do you know this? A stone mason even quary master can do the job without reading or writing. It would be the engineer and architect that wold be able to read. As I said my coleagues and are going gain entry to the chambers and I would be happy to share our findings in the hope that you will see our point of view. Again, this does not mean space alien built, Atlantis crazy machine. You have to admit some very unqiue skills for the time period. I’ve searched cultures all over the world and cannot find one that comes close to the ancient Egyptians technological knowlegde and skill.

        1. I would have to see them with my own eyes and be a scientific as my group and I can.
          I was going to get into the chambers last year but permits are 2000$. Believe me, I’m no conspiracy nut I’m after truth. fake or not it won’t change what the great pyramid is. A masterpiece. With the stuff going on now in Egypt the pyramid is wide open to pay for the ladder to the chambers. My group has had 2 hours alone time which is nice. Maybe 2-300 bucks and in we go. Too much dubious activity in the old days for me to accept these as genuine. No scientific method back then, just treasure hunting it seemed. I could have got the ladder but they took my camera and made me pay to get it back. :( Not next time. We mean no harm, just correctly a historical wrong. :)

          1. I wonder if it occurs to you, Gerry, that going into those chambers with your head perfectly empty of anything relevant to evaluating what you see “with your own eyes”—and adding your collective breath and sweat to the humidity which is already damaging these inscriptions—is doing harm.

            Or that the obvious massive prejudice with which you’ve approached this question—and obvious lack of critical discernment in choosing sources (your reliance on Sitchin for a range of pre-thought thoughts is evident)—completely belies your pretentions to scientificity of any useful level, let alone one superior to that exercised in the 19th century.

            I’d suggest to you, Gerry, that part of science is information science. One needs to do a literature search, to evaluate the forgery claim against the state of knowledge in 1837. On these grounds alone, the claim is bunk—so what warrant do you have to go into those chambers? None at all.

            1. Note: relying on Sitchin at second-hand, third-hand, fourth-hand . . . is still relying on Sitchin. His claims have been repeated so often, by so many people, that one needn’t have read him in the original. Gerry’s failure to recognise and acknowledge that Sitchin is the source of more than one of his points is symptomatic of his poor understanding of the question and lack of basic research.

            2. To which I might add: to promote the forgery claim so vehemently without having read “Sitchun”—without having traced the claim to source and evaluated it as originally presented—might be considered negligent in itself. Gerry has failed even to consult the relevant “alternative” sources on this question (the sources which made it a question in the first place).

            3. That won’t stop me as people go in those chambers all the time especially these days. The evidence will speak for itself and I and my team mates are completely respectful of ancient sites. And by the way my head is full….of truth.

    3. we are going to take photos with an endoscope and microscope USB to tabelt and get close ups. Then the conditions will be recreated so our engineer can reproduce Vyyse’s men’s feat. You can even see in some photos that one of the cartouches is not complete. An insult to KHUFU.

    4. These glyphs have never been properly scrutinized. It was just accepted because because it’s Khufu’s pyramid anyway. It is suspicious that Davidson found no glyphs and Vyyse found a bunch. They had no idea how scientific archaeology would become. Photography, carbon dating etc…I personally beileve they did not mean any harm but were looking for funding and recognition. My words are with all due respect to the science.

  3. Gerry,

    Please rest assured that what you are full of is something you have already made more than adequately evident.

    You say it’s truth. Give us some reason to believe you. Hint: failure to consult the source of what you say is not a good start.

    Whatever it is, plainly it has left no room for modesty, caution or respect for the monuments of an operational kind. By “operational” I mean making a difference to your behaviour: something more than self-congratulatory posturing.

    “I and my team mates are completely respectful of ancient sites.” Yeah, sure you are, Gerry, sure you are. Juxtapose this with these promising candidates for the prestigious “you couldn’t make it up” award: “That won’t stop me as people go in those chambers all the time especially these days.” “My group has had 2 hours alone time which is nice. Maybe 2-300 bucks and in we go.” Yeah, sure, Gerry, your attitude just drips respect.

    Well, no, actually. You know perfectly well that entrance to those chambers is restricted and you know perfectly well that you are using your dollars to suborn low-level functionaries in a poor country.

    Had you respect for the monuments, Gerry, you’d sweat blood to find ways of answering these questions short of putting the material at hazard with your presence. You’d exhaust all avenues. You’d read everything relevant. You’d put yourself through a serious course of study. Not until you’d done all that would you presume to investigate in situ. Give us some reason to suppose that you have done.

    1. Holy Moly Marty, you’re acting as if I’m going to destroy something. The evidence (photographic only, no touching I promise) I and my teammates are going gather will speak for itself. I never said it was not Khufu’s tomb and your response is childish nothing more. Peace brother.

      1. “Holy Moly Marty, you’re acting as if I’m going to destroy something.”

        Yes, Gerry! Now you’re beginning to get it! You and your “team” are going to harm the inscriptions, just by being there. Humidity in the pyramid is already contributing to their deterioration and nothing in your junk-inspired prospectus justifies your making it worse.

        As for childishness, you are the one behaving like a big, spoilt, self-indulgent baby—“knowing better” than the Egyptian authorities, resorting to bribery to get your way, putting the evidence at hazard in pursuit of your ego trip and assuming a right to do all this on the strength of research which would gain an ‘F’ in middle school. That you “just don’t get it” is blazingly strong evidence of your unfitness to go anywhere near the pyramids.

        And Gerry, it will take more than your promise to assure me (and others) that you and your “team” won’t touch, intentionally or through sheer blundering. Sorry not to take you at your own estimation, but nothing about you inspires confidence.

        1. Boy Marty you sure set me straight! Would you like a juice box after your little fit. You don’t know me, and all you is insult. Nice scientific method. No counter evidence from just nasty words. This will be my last post here as you are too immature to debate!

          don’t bother writing back as I will delete your sure to be stupid, childish rant. I”M GOING IN THOSE CHAMBERS and you just have to sit there and whine! :P

          1. Counterevidence? To what? You’ve been asked repeatedly (and not just by me) for evidence, and argument. You’ve come up with nothing—just a declaration in advance of what the results of your “scientific” research will be. Nice method indeed.

            You’ll delete my comments? Really? You run this blog, do you? Funny, I thought it was our host “pithom”, otherwise known as “E. Harding”—but thank you for this exemplary display of maturity and self-discipline: just the kind of person we can trust to behave responsibly at an ancient site.

            I read “stupid, childish rant. I’M GOING IN THOSE CHAMBERS”. You couldn’t make it up. Yes, Gerry, that is a stupid, childish rant. As for whether you’re GOING IN THOSE CHAMBERS, we’ll see.

    2. I believe the intent of this post is to create a flame.
      What i find sad is your attitude in your replies, which denote a personal attack.
      You, Mr. Stower, provided your opinion on Z. Sitchin’s idea long ago, but you should remember that it is your idea and it is adamant that you HAVE to agree with the official version of the story.
      As for the cartouche, sorry for you, it is a double forgery: one ancient, by Perring (and probably by Vyse), and one recent, probably by Hawass and Stadelman.
      In my paper i show how in the famous photo by Stadelman the 2 horizontal lines were added to the left and the right on the central ‘dot’ , and one third line has been painted over the central dot (trying to overwrite it).
      But i am sure no evidence would convince you.

      1. This is a weak comment, but I’m going to approve it anyway. Provide evidence, not your claims. What evidence do you have for your claims? Show your paper, please.

  4. On who was and who was not literate: a known Old Kingdom title, multiply attested, is jmjj-rA zSw aprw, “overseer of the scribes of the crews”. The (repeated) character giving aprw is the same as appears as determinative in the crew names in the pyramid (and elsewhere: they’re not the only examples). From which we may infer that it was normal for aprw to have scribes detailed to them (which should be no surprise, given the scribal character of the administration).

    1. I have not read the other comment and will begin with an apology. Insults are easily flung online and am sure the discussion would be civilized face to face.

      I will begin with my reasons to be suspicious.

      1. 19th century archeology was pretty “greasy” with theft, intimidation and destruction of sites and artifacts.
      2. The Davidson chamber is without glyphs. I found that suspect being a former investigator.
      3. The Egyptologist on my team is convinced some are not of the proper period. This is his area of expertise not mine. This person will prepare a PowerPoint presentation.
      4. The placement of the glyphs, upside down, half obscured etc… demonstrates a purposefulness to point this out ( I do not believe Vyyse had any malice in doing this as it did not change the accepted history). As an investigator I found this to be curious. He was looking for funding and recognition in my opinion
      5. The engineer on my team can easily place glyphs in the “impossible to reach areas”. This person just needs measurements to recreate the conditions. 19th tech only for the device.
      6. I do not believe anyone and I mean anyone not even Khufu himself would be allowed to write sacred text and names in a building in which the geometry and shapes would speak on behalf of the occupant. Would be the ultimate blasphemy and undo all the hard work.
      7. I believe the damaging effects of bat poo fumes would have destroyed the glyphs in a short period of time. (not conclusive)I know Vyyse cleaned this chamber and lived in it.
      8. Quarry men in my opinion would not know how to write and many not have been allowed to.
      9. Only the red lines are genuine in my opinion.

      Reasons for chamber entry.

      1.I need photos and measurements. You are correct about people in this area can cause damage ie: moisture. Technically only one person is needed. I will recommend cotton gloves and a dust mask. Also millions have been in the pyramid and maybe one thousand + in the chambers. Including one girl who may have peed in it. History channel with Hawass present. I don’t see the problem with just one. A guard will be invited to join to assure no foolery.

      Again I apologize Marty. The person will truly be respectful and professional and yes I taking advantage of a rare chance. Look online, may people are now going in there just to say been in the chambers.

      I have to admit that I do not like the red paint behind the queen’s chamber shaft door. not good for my theory. they not glyphs however.

      It is my hope that in the very least Egyptologists will find this compelling even if they disagree. I am a massive admirer of the baffling uniqueness of the ancient Egyptians as they appear to be only capable of the astounding works they have accomplished and all areas of craft. Example of a mistake to be fixed. Pythagoras is not the father of his discipline. The Egyptians were. But that’s another debate.

      Cheers and thanks for presenting evidence and not insults. Forgive my rudeness, I’m French.

  5. Gerry,

    A preliminary comment, as my time is limited.

    Put together your points (2) and (7). You have answered your own question. And you do not know that Vyse cleaned and lived in this chamber. Vyse did not do this. Caviglia did. Again, consider the likely impact of (a) bat infestation and (b) cleaning on inscriptions in Davison’s (not Davidson’s) Chamber. Also remember that the passage to this chamber is, to all appearances, ancient: carefully constructed and likely a product of the pyramid builders themselves. A chamber opened for inspection (checking the roof of the King’s Chamber) might have been cleaned in ancient times.

    Point (8): literacy: I’ve already answered that. Work crews (aprw) had scribes detailed to them. It was the character of the administration.

    As before, you need to improve your research.

    1. Continuing:

      Point (1) is vague and circumstantial at best. You’re talking about a long period of time which encompassed a wide variety of practice, from the crudest of treasure hunting to the beginnings of what we would recognise today as scientific archaeology. You need to detail specific charges and provide evidence for them.

      Point (2): already covered, but to amplify: Davison’s Chamber differed from the others in being open, probably from ancient times. Davison’s was bat infested; the others weren’t. Davison’s was cleaned and occupied by Caviglia; the others weren’t.

      Point (3): perhaps the Egyptologist on your team would like to detail his credentials, as the opinion he gives is contrary to that of every professional Egyptologist who has looked at the things, as also to the opinion of this amateur, who has compared the characters with the forms presented in Goedicke’s Old Hieratic Paleography and with every other example of this genre of inscription he can find. (The ones in the pyramid are not the only ones of their kind.) This (entirely spurious) notion of the inscriptions being of the wrong period is (by strange coincidence) one of the myths originated by Sitchin and repeated uncritically by others.

      Point (4): for inscriptions of this kind to be upside down, half obscured, partly effaced etc. is commonplace. It’s entirely consistent with their having been written before the blocks were placed in their final positions; your point escapes me. Pendant: Vyse was not looking for funding; he had a large regular income from his estates and his investigations were entirely self financed. As for looking for recognition: so what? Lots of people look for recognition without cheating to get it.

      Point (5): just because the engineer on your team can do something, doesn’t mean it was done that way originally. I can produce a fair imitation of all kinds of things: it doesn’t follow that the originals are fakes. You are asking us to believe that Vyse went to all this trouble to salt the site with hidden inscriptions (which likely he couldn’t see himself, with the lighting available in 1837)—and then never once mentioned them? You’re merely assuming what’s convenient for your theory, without any reference to its plausibility (or lack of it) in practice.

      Point (6): your belief on this question is speculative and ill informed. It represents a fantasy of ancient Egypt and not the picture which emerges from research. This is a known genre of inscription. Work crews had names based on the names (plural intended) of the pharaoh.

      Point (7): as noted already, this answers your point (2).

      Point (8): already covered.

      Point (9): speculative opinion, again echoing Sitchin.

      That covers all the reasons offered. I am unable to say that they are very good ones.

      Further comment deferred.

      1. I thank you for the serious debate. I definitely should not tackle Egyptology questions and should have contacted my Egyptologist. Yes this person is real as I would be seen as a crack pot to do otherwise. I thought it was Vyyse who lived in there. I could have just looked it up on google but will admit my blunder.

        I am glad that we are in agreement in regards to the hard to reach glyphs. At least you say it’s plausible. I’ve only heard and been told that “it’s impossible to reach in there.”

        This is all in the very early stages and have to Skype my team and discuss as they are busy writing after our trip to Egypt. All the members have skill in their areas.

        Remember Marty that there is much speculation in Egyptology, not everything is right. I have the benefit of not being an Egyptologist and can speculate or question whatever I want but know if to get into any published work you need a very tight case. Will this get noticed, most likely not but I may be able to raise an eyebrow and someone down the road when technology allows can find proof. Or PROVE the accepted history. I will accept that and be satisfied.

        Again, I use the same techniques in my past investigations. Gut feelings and intuition are very useful in search of clues and evidence. I know Egyptology does not allow for this. Besides I love a good challenge.

        Thank You Marty! We have this in common, a love of Egypt and its baffling wonders.

        One more thing. I’ve only read Chariots of the Gods while in high school. My conclusion, bull@$#&. Sitchin, I would not touch with a ten foot pole as I have never believed in Alien visitations in any form. Modern or Ancient. (Stupid show too).

        1. Not saying that something is impossible (remaining agnostic on the question) is not the same as saying that it’s plausible. I don’t consider the scenario plausible, for reasons already outlined.

          What you should be seeing here is that elaborating the forgery theory to meet the facts requires assumptions which stretch credulity to breaking point. Such as, Vyse expending all of this effort and ingenuity on creating hidden inscriptions (which, even if possible, would surely have been difficult)—and then never once mentioning them?

          The choice is between the simpler explanation—that the inscriptions were written by literate ancient Egyptians—and a ponderous forgery scenario riddled with implausibilities.

          Do you not see, Gerry, that you have no case? You’ve set out nine (9) supposed reasons for suspicion. None of them bears examination.

          1. I think it’s worth pursuing. Yes mostly suspicious thoughts here and not much to go on. I would have to find a mistake somewhere. A USB microscope and endoscope will be needed.

            Thanks and good luck. I believe if done right, I could create some doubt and leave the rest for the future investigator.


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