Snofru, also spelt Sneferu, was the first king of the fourth Dynasty and was responsible for building the first true pyramid in ancient Egypt.
Snofru was the successor and probably the son of King Huni and one of his lesser wives, Meresankh I.
He is thought to have led military campaigns to secure the borders of Egypt, particularly to the south to protect and control the important trade of commodities.
During his reign the final smooth-sided form of the pyramid was perfected. Snofru's first was a step pyramid at Meidum. When Snofru moved his court to Dahshur, in the fifteenth year of his reign, work began on a new pyramid at the site. Its sides at first were very steep, and cracks appeared as the building grew - so its angle of incline was decreased for the higher sections of the construction. This gave it a strange outline - hence the modern name the Bent Pyramid.
A further pyramid was built for the king at the same site, and this is now known as the Red (or Northern) Pyramid. This was Egypt's first true pyramid, and the model on which the more famous structures at Giza were based. It is also thought to be the tomb in which Snofru was finally buried. He was succeeded by his son Khufu, Egypt's best known builder of pyramids. With his impressive building programme it is not surprising that Snofru was deified during the Middle Kingdom.
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