Egyptian Tomb Mystery: may be World's 1st Protractor (what do you think it is or for?)

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posted on Aug, 1 2011 @ 08:50 AM
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The bizarre object pictured here was found in the tomb of an ancient Egyptian architect. For over 100 years, it has languished while archaeologists debated its function.


The architect Kha helped to build pharaohs' tombs during the 18th dynasty, around 1400 BC. His own tomb was discovered intact in 1906 by archaeologist Ernesto Schiaparelli in Deir-al-Medina, near the Valley of the Kings. Among Kha's belongings were measuring instruments including cubit rods, a levelling device that resembles a modern set square, and what appeared to be an oddly shaped empty wooden case with a hinged lid.



But Amelia Sparavigna, a physicist at Turin Polytechnic, suggests that it was a different architectural tool – a protractor. The key, she says, lies in the numbers encoded in the object's ornate decoration, which resembles a compass rose with 16 evenly spaced petals surrounded by a circular zigzag with 36 corners. Sparavigna says that if the straight bar part of the object were laid on a slope, a plumb line would revealed its inclination on the circular dial.

The fraction of one-sixteenth features in a calculus system the Egyptians used, says Sparavigna, and they also identified 36 star groups called the decans, which later formed the basis of a star clock. She suggests the object was "a protractor instrument with two scales, one based on Egyptian fractions, the other based on decans".


Source: archaeologynewsnetwork.blogspot.com...



So, is this the almight secret item that we need to figure out for us to be able to better understand how the pryamids were built? I never seen anything like.

When I first saw it and read the story... I have to get this on ATS and see what the members come up with.

The one problem I see is that the story says it was found in a tomb of an Egytian Architech. I think that is important however, I see it tainting the story... not supporting the claim. I believe more info would be needed before making that assumption. It seems pretty decrative and unsed-to me. to be what they claim.

So, what do you think it is?

I found this info on Kha-the architech. looked like a nice guy...

Statue of the Architect Kha


This statue shows Kha to be an honored servant, rather than a nobleman. He is standing with his left foot forward, a typical pose for officials, but is not carrying any of the tokens of office usually carried by officials; instead, he has his hands empty and palms facing back in a gesture of supplication. His wig is very fine, but his clothes are a simple kilt without the elaborate pleated overshirt favored by the nobility at this time.

wesheb.tdonnelly.org...
edit on 8/1/2011 by anon72 because: (no reason given)




posted on Aug, 1 2011 @ 08:57 AM
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hi op
at first glance i thought its was prigmitve gun
with 2 holes beaing touch holes
now im not sure



posted on Aug, 1 2011 @ 09:04 AM
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A really fancy incense stick holder?...I've got no idea.

Any chance of it just being an ornement?

Some different views of the object would make this alot easier to speculate on.
edit on 1-8-2011 by iksose7 because: (no reason given)



posted on Aug, 1 2011 @ 09:04 AM
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to me it looks like a leveller....like the water level i have.....

i think its for straight lines...



posted on Aug, 1 2011 @ 09:05 AM
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Seems most Egyptologists aren't on board with this idea. When they've made levels they integrated a string directly into the instrument.



For this protractor to work, you would have to dangle a string (held separately) and line it up with the center of the dial to get an accurate reading. That's a bit awkward. Why not follow their other examples of tools and integrate the string? Not that a lack of a string doesn't preclude it from being a protractor necessarily, for all we know this is a symbolic protractor buried with a famed mason or architect.



posted on Aug, 1 2011 @ 09:09 AM
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What I think is that I'd like to see a better picture of it. (I went to the site, but the picture doesn't enlarge.)

As a former cabinetmaker, my opinion is that it probably is a protractor of some sort. It has the look of an instrument that has seen some use, but at the same time care has been taken to avoid dents and scrapes. I rule out symbolic or mystical uses because of its "utilitarian" overall design and lack of decorative symbologies and esoteric content.

Sometimes a tool is just a tool....



posted on Aug, 1 2011 @ 09:14 AM
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reply to post by Blackmarketeer
 


but i can see string and two holes.....as well as the symmetry of the middle circular part....the plumb lines you have, in my opinion, are very similar to the peice..thought this peice seems more sophisticated and probably more acurate on unlevel ground...


.peace



posted on Aug, 1 2011 @ 09:17 AM
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Originally posted by Blackmarketeer
Seems most Egyptologists aren't on board with this idea. When they've made levels they integrated a string directly into the instrument.
....

For this protractor to work, you would have to dangle a string (held separately) and line it up with the center of the dial to get an accurate reading. That's a bit awkward. Why not follow their other examples of tools and integrate the string? Not that a lack of a string doesn't preclude it from being a protractor necessarily, for all we know this is a symbolic protractor buried with a famed mason or architect.

Having considered your "string theory," I took a second look and have decided that it may be some type of "inclinometer." In any case I don't think it's decorative or symbolic. I think it's a well-used tool....



posted on Aug, 1 2011 @ 09:23 AM
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oh silly me and i thought it was to make sure shelves were level

good find by the way, the egyptians were lot more complicated then they may seem



posted on Aug, 1 2011 @ 09:24 AM
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reply to post by Ex_CT2
 


Great... sometimes a tool is just a tool. Love it.

I went looking and I found the museum exhibit for Kha (from 2008):
Here is the best pic of the item.



In the foreground, there are 4 wooden smoothers or irons for papyrus or perhaps pestles to grind pigments and a wooden instrument, perhaps a balance.

Source: xy2.org...

I just notice a small thing. Look at the left side of the pic-at the item. Notice how the one corner is slightly titled and has a hole in it. Hmmm. It look pretty darn oramental done to me.



posted on Aug, 1 2011 @ 09:34 AM
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The "device" pictured in the OP is not a device at all, rather it is the "oddly shaped empty wooden case with a hinged lid" mentioned in the description (more info at link below). That would explain why it has holes in it, they were probably for a shoulder strap so it could be more easily carried. The case is empty, too bad because I suspect whatever measuring tool that was kept inside it would have been quite interesting indeed if it's case was so decorative. There are some additional photos of it here:

www.archaeogate.org...

Regarding the decorations, I was interested in this comment from the above link:


But, the use of 1/16 fraction, the coincidence of the number of corners with that of decans, and the fact that the decoration was engraved on the instrument of an architect, suggest me that this object had been used as a protractor instrument with two scales, one based on Egyptian fractions, the other based on decans.


Since the Egyptians used two different sets of measures (Egyptian fractions and decans), then this object may simply be a conversion tool. Since it has both units of measure represented on it, it could be used to convert measurements back and forth from one system to the other. We have to do this even today because architects use fractions and engineers (mainly civil) use decimals. That would make sense, it could be used as a case to carry a delicate measuring instrument and the case itself could also be used as a conversion tool.


edit on 1-8-2011 by SavedOne because: Typo



posted on Aug, 1 2011 @ 09:49 AM
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reply to post by SavedOne
 


I think you are partically right but... they continued with the explaniation. Either way, the item in the OP pic is the item in quesiton.

I think it was a device with the ability to put things inside (rope, associated pieces for the holes etc).


One of the objects from the Kha's Tomb, Egyptian Museum of Torino, is supposed to be the case of a balance scale (see Fig.1), or the scale itself. This is what we read from the label. In a previous preparation of the items of Kha's Tomb, it was possible to see the front and back of the object (see Fig.2). They are the same, with the same complex decoration. In my opinion, this decoration had a functional use too, may be as a protractor, to determine directions.


The picture from the story IS the device.

Also, as far as it being the box with the hinges... Not so fast... I say. Go to the links I have for KHA tomb exhibit. Talk about hinged boxes...

And, looking at the items from his tomb... how can anyone say they could build the Giza Pryamids.


edit on 8/1/2011 by anon72 because: (no reason given)



posted on Aug, 1 2011 @ 09:51 AM
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reply to post by anon72
 


To me it looks like a device for removing the curl from a rolled drawing so it will lay flat on a table. The round center part is the handle and the long bar with the gentle curve would be pressed against the paper to be straightened.

Best regards,
Chris



posted on Aug, 1 2011 @ 09:56 AM
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it has to be some sort of measuring device, which is already shown/touched on in your o.p.
i think that is the answer or at least the first thing to suspect.



posted on Aug, 1 2011 @ 10:21 AM
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That symbol on the circular part looks like the flower of life. Which was considered sacred. I guess it could be used as a tool but something so sacred to the Egyptians seems strange to me to put it on anything unless it was very important. But I'm not an expert so I'll just scratch my head like the rest of us



posted on Aug, 1 2011 @ 10:54 AM
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Originally posted by DrZrD
reply to post by anon72
 


To me it looks like a device for removing the curl from a rolled drawing so it will lay flat on a table. The round center part is the handle and the long bar with the gentle curve would be pressed against the paper to be straightened.

Best regards,
Chris

Well, there we have it. There's no reason that this cannot be both a multifunction tool and a carrying case for a tool. If it also has a carving of a "flower of life," as occy30 suggests, or any other decorative or "sacred" symbols, well--BONUS!

Such things are not unknown even today (that is, multifunction/decorative tools)....



posted on Aug, 1 2011 @ 01:55 PM
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It just seems a little odd that no other devices such as these have been discovered or known about.

They didn't just have 1 device and even if they did, they wouldn't bury it with someone.

Unless they didn't need the device anymore.

Or, they were common enough that one could be buried.

But then if they were used for pryamid building, with so many being built, we should have discovered others. Or seen them or read about them previously-one would think.



posted on Aug, 1 2011 @ 02:00 PM
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Maybe its surveyor equipment? My 3 cents



posted on Aug, 1 2011 @ 02:30 PM
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reply to post by anon72
 
I wonder if it was a form of protractor that was used to calculate gradients of land or elevations?

The AE used channels of water as we use spirit-levels. If the object floats, perhaps it was floated on the surface and then used to estimate angles of elevation?



posted on Aug, 1 2011 @ 03:00 PM
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Originally posted by Kandinsky
reply to post by anon72
 
I wonder if it was a form of protractor that was used to calculate gradients of land or elevations?

The AE used channels of water as we use spirit-levels. If the object floats, perhaps it was floated on the surface and then used to estimate angles of elevation?



You realize that if it floats it's a WITCH!!!!
edit on 1-8-2011 by occy30 because: (no reason given)





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