Skip to main content
Select Source:

Khufu

Khufu

Khufu (reigned 2590-2568 B.C.), or Cheops, was an Egyptian king who built the Great Pyramid at Giza and ruled as the second king of the Fourth Dynasty.

The son and immediate successor of Queen Hetepheres and King Snefru, the founder of the Fourth Dynasty (ca. 2613-2494 B.C.), Khufu is perhaps better known by his Greek name, Cheops. His Great Pyramid at Giza marks the climax in pyramid building in respect to both size and quality of construction. No monument in Egypt has been surveyed and measured so often and so carefully. Its base covers an area of 13.1 acres, and a survey undertaken in 1925 showed that the difference between the longest and shortest sides was only 7.9 inches. When complete, it rose to a height of 481.4 feet, the top 31 feet of which are now missing.

It has been estimated that the core of local stone and the outer facing of the completed pyramid were composed of about 2,300,000 separate blocks, each averaging about 2 1/2 tons. The outer facing was originally of Tura limestone, but with the exception of a few pieces at the base, all this has been stripped off the sides. The capstone, which was possibly of granite, has also been removed.

The original entrance was in the north face at a height of about 55 feet measured vertically above ground level. According to a Moslem tradition, a large opening a little below it was made during the 9th century A.D. at the command of the caliph al-Mamun, who mistakenly believed that the pyramid contained hidden treasure.

The internal arrangements show two changes of plan, the latter of which involved the construction of the famous Grand Gallery, which slopes upward to the burial place, now known as the King's Chamber. Adjoining the east face of the pyramid was the Mortuary Temple.

Little is known of the events of this King's reign, but some indication of the extent of Egypt's power and influence at this time is afforded by the occurrence of his name on monuments ranging from Nubia to Sinai and even farther afield. A stele bearing his name was found in the diorite quarries northwest of Toshka in the Nubian Desert, and a relief at Wadi Maghara in Sinai depicts him smiting the local Bedouin.

Further Reading

What is known of the events of Khufu's reign is discussed by William Stevenson Smith in The Cambridge Ancient History, vol. 1 (2d ed. 1962). For information on the Great Pyramid at Giza see lowerth Eiddon Stephen Edwards, The Pyramids of Egypt (rev. ed. 1961), and on the tomb of Khufu's mother, Hetepheres, see "The Tomb of Hetep-heres" in volume 2 of George Andrew Reisner and William Stevenson Smith, A History of the Giza Necropolis (2 vols., 1942-1955). A background work is Sir A. H. Gardiner, Egypt of the Pharaohs (1961). □

Cite this article
Pick a style below, and copy the text for your bibliography.

  • MLA
  • Chicago
  • APA

"Khufu." Encyclopedia of World Biography. . Encyclopedia.com. 22 May. 2018 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

"Khufu." Encyclopedia of World Biography. . Encyclopedia.com. (May 22, 2018). http://www.encyclopedia.com/history/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/khufu

"Khufu." Encyclopedia of World Biography. . Retrieved May 22, 2018 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/history/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/khufu

Learn more about citation styles

Citation styles

Encyclopedia.com gives you the ability to cite reference entries and articles according to common styles from the Modern Language Association (MLA), The Chicago Manual of Style, and the American Psychological Association (APA).

Within the “Cite this article” tool, pick a style to see how all available information looks when formatted according to that style. Then, copy and paste the text into your bibliography or works cited list.

Because each style has its own formatting nuances that evolve over time and not all information is available for every reference entry or article, Encyclopedia.com cannot guarantee each citation it generates. Therefore, it’s best to use Encyclopedia.com citations as a starting point before checking the style against your school or publication’s requirements and the most-recent information available at these sites:

Modern Language Association

http://www.mla.org/style

The Chicago Manual of Style

http://www.chicagomanualofstyle.org/tools_citationguide.html

American Psychological Association

http://apastyle.apa.org/

Notes:
  • Most online reference entries and articles do not have page numbers. Therefore, that information is unavailable for most Encyclopedia.com content. However, the date of retrieval is often important. Refer to each style’s convention regarding the best way to format page numbers and retrieval dates.
  • In addition to the MLA, Chicago, and APA styles, your school, university, publication, or institution may have its own requirements for citations. Therefore, be sure to refer to those guidelines when editing your bibliography or works cited list.

Khufu

Khufu (khōō´fōō) or Cheops (kē´ŏps), fl. c.2680 BC, king of ancient Egypt, founder of the IV dynasty. He was king for 23 years and was famous as the builder of the greatest pyramid at Giza.

Cite this article
Pick a style below, and copy the text for your bibliography.

  • MLA
  • Chicago
  • APA

"Khufu." The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed.. . Encyclopedia.com. 22 May. 2018 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

"Khufu." The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed.. . Encyclopedia.com. (May 22, 2018). http://www.encyclopedia.com/reference/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/khufu

"Khufu." The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed.. . Retrieved May 22, 2018 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/reference/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/khufu

Learn more about citation styles

Citation styles

Encyclopedia.com gives you the ability to cite reference entries and articles according to common styles from the Modern Language Association (MLA), The Chicago Manual of Style, and the American Psychological Association (APA).

Within the “Cite this article” tool, pick a style to see how all available information looks when formatted according to that style. Then, copy and paste the text into your bibliography or works cited list.

Because each style has its own formatting nuances that evolve over time and not all information is available for every reference entry or article, Encyclopedia.com cannot guarantee each citation it generates. Therefore, it’s best to use Encyclopedia.com citations as a starting point before checking the style against your school or publication’s requirements and the most-recent information available at these sites:

Modern Language Association

http://www.mla.org/style

The Chicago Manual of Style

http://www.chicagomanualofstyle.org/tools_citationguide.html

American Psychological Association

http://apastyle.apa.org/

Notes:
  • Most online reference entries and articles do not have page numbers. Therefore, that information is unavailable for most Encyclopedia.com content. However, the date of retrieval is often important. Refer to each style’s convention regarding the best way to format page numbers and retrieval dates.
  • In addition to the MLA, Chicago, and APA styles, your school, university, publication, or institution may have its own requirements for citations. Therefore, be sure to refer to those guidelines when editing your bibliography or works cited list.

Cheops

Cheops (fl. early 26th century bc), Egyptian pharaoh of the 4th dynasty; Egyptian name Khufu. He commissioned the building of the Great Pyramid at Giza.

Cite this article
Pick a style below, and copy the text for your bibliography.

  • MLA
  • Chicago
  • APA

"Cheops." The Oxford Dictionary of Phrase and Fable. . Encyclopedia.com. 22 May. 2018 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

"Cheops." The Oxford Dictionary of Phrase and Fable. . Encyclopedia.com. (May 22, 2018). http://www.encyclopedia.com/humanities/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/cheops

"Cheops." The Oxford Dictionary of Phrase and Fable. . Retrieved May 22, 2018 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/humanities/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/cheops

Learn more about citation styles

Citation styles

Encyclopedia.com gives you the ability to cite reference entries and articles according to common styles from the Modern Language Association (MLA), The Chicago Manual of Style, and the American Psychological Association (APA).

Within the “Cite this article” tool, pick a style to see how all available information looks when formatted according to that style. Then, copy and paste the text into your bibliography or works cited list.

Because each style has its own formatting nuances that evolve over time and not all information is available for every reference entry or article, Encyclopedia.com cannot guarantee each citation it generates. Therefore, it’s best to use Encyclopedia.com citations as a starting point before checking the style against your school or publication’s requirements and the most-recent information available at these sites:

Modern Language Association

http://www.mla.org/style

The Chicago Manual of Style

http://www.chicagomanualofstyle.org/tools_citationguide.html

American Psychological Association

http://apastyle.apa.org/

Notes:
  • Most online reference entries and articles do not have page numbers. Therefore, that information is unavailable for most Encyclopedia.com content. However, the date of retrieval is often important. Refer to each style’s convention regarding the best way to format page numbers and retrieval dates.
  • In addition to the MLA, Chicago, and APA styles, your school, university, publication, or institution may have its own requirements for citations. Therefore, be sure to refer to those guidelines when editing your bibliography or works cited list.

Cheops

Cheops: see Khufu.

Cite this article
Pick a style below, and copy the text for your bibliography.

  • MLA
  • Chicago
  • APA

"Cheops." The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed.. . Encyclopedia.com. 22 May. 2018 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

"Cheops." The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed.. . Encyclopedia.com. (May 22, 2018). http://www.encyclopedia.com/reference/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/cheops

"Cheops." The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed.. . Retrieved May 22, 2018 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/reference/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/cheops

Learn more about citation styles

Citation styles

Encyclopedia.com gives you the ability to cite reference entries and articles according to common styles from the Modern Language Association (MLA), The Chicago Manual of Style, and the American Psychological Association (APA).

Within the “Cite this article” tool, pick a style to see how all available information looks when formatted according to that style. Then, copy and paste the text into your bibliography or works cited list.

Because each style has its own formatting nuances that evolve over time and not all information is available for every reference entry or article, Encyclopedia.com cannot guarantee each citation it generates. Therefore, it’s best to use Encyclopedia.com citations as a starting point before checking the style against your school or publication’s requirements and the most-recent information available at these sites:

Modern Language Association

http://www.mla.org/style

The Chicago Manual of Style

http://www.chicagomanualofstyle.org/tools_citationguide.html

American Psychological Association

http://apastyle.apa.org/

Notes:
  • Most online reference entries and articles do not have page numbers. Therefore, that information is unavailable for most Encyclopedia.com content. However, the date of retrieval is often important. Refer to each style’s convention regarding the best way to format page numbers and retrieval dates.
  • In addition to the MLA, Chicago, and APA styles, your school, university, publication, or institution may have its own requirements for citations. Therefore, be sure to refer to those guidelines when editing your bibliography or works cited list.

Cheops

Cheopsapse, collapse, craps, elapse, lapse, perhaps, schnapps •prolapse • synapse • Lesseps •quadriceps •biceps, triceps •forceps •traipse, trapes •jackanapes • Pepys •Chips, eclipse, ellipse, thrips •Phillips • apocalypse •amidships, midships •cripes, Stars and Stripes •copse • Cheops • Pelops • Cyclops •triceratops • corpse • Stopes •oops, whoops •turps • mumps • goosebumps

Cite this article
Pick a style below, and copy the text for your bibliography.

  • MLA
  • Chicago
  • APA

"Cheops." Oxford Dictionary of Rhymes. . Encyclopedia.com. 22 May. 2018 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

"Cheops." Oxford Dictionary of Rhymes. . Encyclopedia.com. (May 22, 2018). http://www.encyclopedia.com/humanities/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/cheops-0

"Cheops." Oxford Dictionary of Rhymes. . Retrieved May 22, 2018 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/humanities/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/cheops-0

Learn more about citation styles

Citation styles

Encyclopedia.com gives you the ability to cite reference entries and articles according to common styles from the Modern Language Association (MLA), The Chicago Manual of Style, and the American Psychological Association (APA).

Within the “Cite this article” tool, pick a style to see how all available information looks when formatted according to that style. Then, copy and paste the text into your bibliography or works cited list.

Because each style has its own formatting nuances that evolve over time and not all information is available for every reference entry or article, Encyclopedia.com cannot guarantee each citation it generates. Therefore, it’s best to use Encyclopedia.com citations as a starting point before checking the style against your school or publication’s requirements and the most-recent information available at these sites:

Modern Language Association

http://www.mla.org/style

The Chicago Manual of Style

http://www.chicagomanualofstyle.org/tools_citationguide.html

American Psychological Association

http://apastyle.apa.org/

Notes:
  • Most online reference entries and articles do not have page numbers. Therefore, that information is unavailable for most Encyclopedia.com content. However, the date of retrieval is often important. Refer to each style’s convention regarding the best way to format page numbers and retrieval dates.
  • In addition to the MLA, Chicago, and APA styles, your school, university, publication, or institution may have its own requirements for citations. Therefore, be sure to refer to those guidelines when editing your bibliography or works cited list.

Khufu

Khufu •samfu • tofu • Khufu

Cite this article
Pick a style below, and copy the text for your bibliography.

  • MLA
  • Chicago
  • APA

"Khufu." Oxford Dictionary of Rhymes. . Encyclopedia.com. 22 May. 2018 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

"Khufu." Oxford Dictionary of Rhymes. . Encyclopedia.com. (May 22, 2018). http://www.encyclopedia.com/humanities/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/khufu

"Khufu." Oxford Dictionary of Rhymes. . Retrieved May 22, 2018 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/humanities/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/khufu

Learn more about citation styles

Citation styles

Encyclopedia.com gives you the ability to cite reference entries and articles according to common styles from the Modern Language Association (MLA), The Chicago Manual of Style, and the American Psychological Association (APA).

Within the “Cite this article” tool, pick a style to see how all available information looks when formatted according to that style. Then, copy and paste the text into your bibliography or works cited list.

Because each style has its own formatting nuances that evolve over time and not all information is available for every reference entry or article, Encyclopedia.com cannot guarantee each citation it generates. Therefore, it’s best to use Encyclopedia.com citations as a starting point before checking the style against your school or publication’s requirements and the most-recent information available at these sites:

Modern Language Association

http://www.mla.org/style

The Chicago Manual of Style

http://www.chicagomanualofstyle.org/tools_citationguide.html

American Psychological Association

http://apastyle.apa.org/

Notes:
  • Most online reference entries and articles do not have page numbers. Therefore, that information is unavailable for most Encyclopedia.com content. However, the date of retrieval is often important. Refer to each style’s convention regarding the best way to format page numbers and retrieval dates.
  • In addition to the MLA, Chicago, and APA styles, your school, university, publication, or institution may have its own requirements for citations. Therefore, be sure to refer to those guidelines when editing your bibliography or works cited list.