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New Rock Tomb Discovered at Saqqara Necropolis by Egyptian-Japanese Mission

January 10, 2024
Photo credit: Wikimedia Creative Commons.

During the ongoing excavation season at the Saqqara necropolis, the joint Egyptian-Japanese archaeological mission revealed a rock tomb containing multiple graves and artifacts spanning different historical periods.

Mostafa Waziri, the Secretary General of the Supreme Council of Antiquities, disclosed that examinations of the newly discovered tomb and the pottery found within indicate it origin dates to theSecond Dynasty.

Mohamed Youssef, the Director General of Saqqara Antiquities and Head of the Egyptian team, reported that the excavated burials include the remnants of a male burial adorned with a colored mask, as well as the burial of a young child. There are also several burials from the Late and Ptolemaic periods, including one with a poorly preserved coffin from the Eighteenth Dynasty, that still contains an antique alabaster vase in good condition.

Photo credit: Al-Ahram.

Nozomu Kawai, leading the Japanese side of the mission, highlighted some of the unearthed artifacts, such as two terracotta statues of the goddess Isis, white fragments depicting the god Harpocrates mounting on a bird, wearing a mask in shades of green and white, and embellished with pieces of two faience amulets symbolizing the goddesses Isis and Bes.

The mission uncovered a fragment of a limestone ushabti bearing hieroglyphic inscriptions, an wedjat faience  amulet, a pottery lamp, pottery ostraka with hieratic inscriptions, as well as pottery tools and sherds.

Photo credit: Al-Ahram.

The meticulous archaeological documentation undertaken, spearheaded by Kawai, contributes significantly to our understanding of Egypt’s rich cultural and historical heritage. He emphasized the thorough archaeological documentation conducted for all discoveries and expressed optimism about the mission’s potential for further revelations in upcoming excavation seasons, unveiling more secrets from the Saqqara archaeological region.

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