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Difference between Mastaba and Pyramid

Difference between Mastaba and Pyramid

Mastaba and Pyramid are two ancient Egyptian tombs. They were constructed during the Old Kingdom period, about 2686-2181 BC. There is a lot of debate between scholars on which tomb is older: Mastaba or Pyramid. However, recent evidence suggests that Mastaba may be the older one. Despite this fact, Mastaba and Pyramid have many similarities and differences. In this blog post, we will explore these similarities and differences in detail. Stay tuned!

What is Mastaba?

Mastaba is a type of tomb that was used in Ancient Egypt. Mastabas were constructed out of mud brick or stone, and they had a flat roof. Mastabas were usually rectangular in shape, and they had sloping sides that got narrower towards the top. Mastabas were usually built next to the Nile River so that the dead could be buried in the ground that was thought to be sacred. Mastabas were also used as places to offer food and drink to the gods. The most famous mastaba is the Step Pyramid of Djoser, which was built in around 2630 BCE. Mastabas continued to be used until around the first century CE.

What is Pyramid?

A pyramid tomb is a type of burial chamber that is characterized by its Pyramid-like shape. Pyramid tombs are most commonly found in ancient Egypt, where they were used to bury Pharaohs and other important dignitaries. The first Pyramid tomb was built during the Third Dynasty of Egypt, and Pyramid tombs continued to be constructed until the end of the Old Kingdom period. During this time, Pyramid tombs were also built in other parts of the world, including Mesoamerica and Asia. Pyramid tombs typically consist of a square or rectangular base, which is surmounted by a series of sloping sides that meet at a point. The interior of a Pyramid tomb is often elaborately decorated and may contain artifacts, paintings, and inscriptions.

Difference between Mastaba and Pyramid

  • Mastabas and pyramids are both types of ancient Egyptian tombs. Mastabas were the first type of tomb built in Egypt, and they remained the most common type of tomb until the Old Kingdom period. Pyramids, on the other hand, only became popular during the Old Kingdom. Mastabas are rectangular structures with sloping sides and flat roofs.
  • They were built out of mud brick or stone, and they typically contained a series of chambers used for different purposes. Pyramids, on the other hand, are much more iconic structures. They are large buildings with three or more sides that meet at a point, and they are usually made out of stone.
  • Pyramids typically contained a single chamber used as a tomb for the pharaoh. Mastabas and pyramids served different functions, but they both helped to preserve the bodies of the Pharaohs so that they could be properly mummified and buried in the afterlife.


The mastaba is an ancient Egyptian tomb that predates the pyramid. It differs from the pyramid in a few significant ways, most notably its shape and construction materials. Let’s take a closer look at these two iconic structures and see how they differ.

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