Ancient Pyramids Around the World

No matter if the civilization was Mesopotamian, Egyptian, or Mayan, its legacy today is in part marked by towering pyramids


Rome, Italy: Pyramid of Cestius

Pyramid of Cestius
(imagebroker / Alamy)

This steep, pointed pyramid was built circa 12 B.C. as a tomb for the Roman magistrate Gaius Cestius Epulo, as evidenced by an inscription carved into its sides. The inscription also identifies Cestius’ heirs, and states that the pyramid took 330 days to construct. It is made of concrete covered with white marble, with paintings on the interior walls. In 1887, the English poet Thomas Hardy penned these lines after seeing the pyramid, which he considered less important than the nearby graves of the poets John Keats and Percy Bysshe Shelley: “Who, then, was Cestius, and what is he to me?... I can recall no word, Of anything he did; For me he is a man who died and was interred, To Leave a pyramid.”


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