Steyn took his 300th test wicket and Kallis reached 13 000 runs in tests, achievements that are shared by only 26 other men among the 2 699 who have played test cricket.
Philander took 5/7 in six overs to hasten the Black Caps’ crash to a pathetic total of 45, the third lowest in test history by a team that has chosen to bat first and the lowest recorded against SA, pipping the 47 Australia were shot out for last November.
SA will resume today on 252/3, a lead of 207 runs of which 103 belonged to Alviro Petersen, who will continue this morning to construct another kind of monument: to patience, watchfulness and the importance of staying in the bubble.
No bubble was safe from Philander yesterday. Before he had conceded a run, he had removed Martin Guptill, Brendon McCullum and Dean Brownlie.
Kane Williamson took away Philander’s clean sheet when he drove his 22nd delivery through the covers for four. But, two balls later, Philander trapped Williamson in front for 13 – the visitors’ only double-figure score.
Philander completed his haul with his next effort, his 25th delivery, which B J Watling edged to A B de Villiers.
Only after that, and James Franklin’s edge to first slip off Morne Morkel, was Steyn able to send Doug Bracewell’s leg stump tumbling with a delivery that pitched on middle.
Steyn put the New Zealanders out of their misery when Daniel Flynn, who faced the most balls in the innings – 28 – skied a pullback to the bowler.
The innings lasted 116 balls and was over in 100 minutes.
SA faced just two overs before lunch, but the mayhem continued when Graeme Smith was out leg-before to Bracewell for one.
Smith’s footwork failed him, a flaw that had proved fatal for several Kiwis. The pitch was lively and offered early movement off the seam, but more agile batsmen survived and prospered as the moisture melted away.
Hashim Amla showed them how with seamless strokeplay that took him to a fluent 66 before he stepped towards cover once too often and was smacked plumb in front by Franklin.
That put paid to a partnership of 107, and brought Kallis to the crease.
He slashed the 36th ball he faced, bowled by the unfortunate Bracewell, through gully for four to bring up the magical 13 000.
Before Kallis’ cracking 60 was ended when he edged a drive off Trent Boult to Brendon McCullum, both he and Petersen – the most unlikely of reverse sweepers – were reverse sweeping lustily in their stand of 104.