The "Treasury" was probably constructed during the reign of the Nabatean ruler Aretas III Philhellene (82-62 B.C.). It is probably a temple and not actually a tomb.
This tomb is divided into two stories. The exterior of the lower storey has four free-standing and two engaged columns that support a classical-style architrave and triangular pediment. Behind these columns is a porch with a large central door that leads into the primary shrine room that probably contained a statue of the deity al-'Uzza (the Nabatean equivalent of Aphrodite). On the north and south sides of the porch door lead to side rooms.
On the upper storey is a round "tholos" that is crowned with a solid Urn. The local population at times mistakenly thought that the urn was hollow and contained a treasury (thus the name Khazneh, Arabic of "treasury') and tried to break it open by shooting at it.