05 - Rostau

Original date of article: January 2019

Rostau was the archaic name for the necropolis on the Giza plateau, the origin of this mysterious place seems to go back to the "first time", the earliest history of Egypt. In the 19th century the French archaeologist Auguste Mariette discovered in Giza the so called "inventory stele". According to the inscriptions on that stela there existed already, a long time before Cheops came to the throne, a "big" pyramid and a temple on the Gizeh plateau (Rostau). Still according to these inscriptions, Isis was "the mistress of that pyramid and temple".

No, it’s not about the Sphinx here nor about the pyramid of Cheops, Chefren or Mycerinus. These monuments are all perfectly north-south oriented and originate from a (much) later era. However, let’s take a closer look at the pyramid of Mycerinus (Menkaure).


© The pyramid of Menkaure, according to a drawing by I.E.S Edwards. [Note 1]

The chambers in the pyramid of Mycerinus (Menkaure).
Own sketch based on a drawing by B. Tadema Sporry. [see Note 2]

1 - The (original) antechamber.
2 - The (original) burial chamber.
3 - The burial chamber.
4 - The Lower chamber with 6 niches.
5 - Original access to an earlier smaller pyramid.
6 - Final entrance.
7 - Tunnel, access to the lower rooms.
8 - Corridor towards the roof of the burial chamber 3.
9 - Staircase with six steps to the lower room 4.
10 - The entire room is covered with granite,
the ceiling is carved out like a vault.

For more pictures ands detailed info see wesite:

Extract from the book "The pyramids and Temples of Gizeh" by W.M Flinders Petrie anno 1883 [see note 3]:

Measurements below in inch, 1 inch = 2.54 cm

88. Beside the first, second, and granite chamber, there is a loculus chamber; this is entered by a flight of steps turning out of the passage to the granite chamber. These steps are by far the earliest known in any building or excavation: they are six in number, and their breadths are from 10.5 to 12 inches, averaging 11.3. This loculus chamber was doubtless intended to contain coffins, judging by the sizes of the recesses. The chamber is on N. 74.0, S. 77.0, E. 211, W. 205.1; 78.2 high on N; 80.0 in mid; 78.2 on S.

The doorway is in the S. wall at 38.0 to 73.9 from the E. side. In the E. wall are four loculi, and in the N. wall two, of the following shapes:—

[p. 120] The floors of the loculi are level with the floor of the chamber, and their tops average 22.1 below the ceiling.. Their inner ends are not fully worked to the width of the openings, as they are left rather in the rough. [End extract]

See Wikipedia : Loculus


The particularly interesting room here is the lower burial chamber (4) which has a completely different orientation than the rest of the rooms, all of which (except chamber 4) are perfectly north-south or east-west oriented. The burial chambers in the pyramid have smooth, flat walls except for the lowest one which was roughly cut from the rocks. There are six niches in the side walls which were also roughly carved out.

Top view of the burial chambers in the Menkaure pyramid.

The exact orientation of the lower burial chamber (4) is not known, measured on the above small drawing this would be approximately 66° NW.

The smaller pyramid inside the one of Menkaure.

Below the pyramid of Menkaure exists a smaller and therefore older pyramid (red) with an entrance (1) and a descending corridor. Originally, the smaller pyramid, the entrance 1 and the underground room (4) belonged together, they once formed one whole. Menkaure has built his pyramid on top of the older one and has changed the internal structure of it.

What is the orientation of the little pyramid?

The orientation of the smallest pyramid itself is not known, it's possible that it makes the same 66° NW angle as the lower chamber (4). However, on the above sketch the oldest corridor (1) as well as the later descending corridor (3) are both drawn exactly on the North-South axis. This suggests that the smallest pyramid is also perfectly north-south oriented. The underground chamber (4) must have been build first. The smallest pyramid may have been built (much) later, certainly sometime after the crustal shift had stopped. Most likely this little pyramid and a temple were constructed many years before Cheops appeared on the scene and of course an even longer time before Menkaure.

The smaller pyramid inside the one of Menkaure, the lower burial chamber with six niches (for six persons?) as well as a temple on the Giza plateau all in honor of Isis, the mistress of the pyramid. Is this the true secret of Rostau?


The orientation of the lowest underground chamber is not accurately known
and was only measured on a small drawing.
In reality, that angle can deviate a few degrees from the actual value.
In the drawing, 66 ° NW is taken as being the correct angle.

The lower burial chamber in the pyramid of Menkaure, orientation 66° NW.
N1G is the former position of the geographical North Pole.
The absolute maximum angle is 74.5° NW = pointing towards the former Geographical North Pole.


Reign of king Djer:

Mention of the star or goddess Sopdet or Sirius.
During his reign King Djer lost two of his Queens.
Djer spent a lot of time on the uniting of Upper and Lower Egypt,
because the two nations had difficulty working together.

Wikipedia Djer : King Djer (Dutch)

See Wikipedia Djer : King Djer (English)

The grave of Djer (O) itself was later seen as the grave of Osiris and became a pilgrimage site in the New Kingdom.

The tomb O (63° NW) of king Djer was probably the first on the burial field Umm El Qa'ab which was aligned onto Syene with the star Sirius. Before this line O (63° NW) is the reign of King Djer. The lower burial chamber in the pyramid of Menkaure with its 66° NW orientation comes in time a little earlier than the tomb of Djer (O). So, this burial chamber may have been built during the reign of King Djer.

Osiris arrived in a time of Chaos in Egypt, Isis was his wife and Queen. On the Gizeh plateau stood a “great” pyramid and temple in honor of Isis, a long time before pharaoh Cheops came on the throne. King Djer was buried in Umm el Qa’ab, Abydos. The grave of Djer (O) itself was later seen as the grave of Osiris and became a pilgrimage site in the New Kingdom. It seems king Djer and Osiris were one and the same person, one of his queens who died before him must have been Isis and may have been buried on the Giza plateau.


References to Chapter 05.

[1] Book "De piramiden van Egypte" by I.E.S. Edwards 1987 - ISBN 90 6045 5592

[2] Book "De piramiden van Egypte"
     by Bob Tadema Sporry and Auke A. Tadema 1980 - ISBN 90 228 3315 1

[3] Book "The pyramids and Temples of Gizeh" by W.M Flinders Petrie anno 1883
     online by © 2003–14 Ronald Birdsall. All rights reserved.