Newly Discovered Tomb in Egypt uncovers 30 Mummies

February 10, 2009

Cairo (ChattahBox) — A 2,600-year-old tomb housing about two dozen ancient Egyptian mummies and Eight sarcophagi has been unearthed by Egyptian archaeologists during the latest round of excavations archaeologists said Monday.

The tomb in the vast necropolis of Saqqara south of Cairo, was located at the bottom of a 36-foot deep shaft, said Egypt’s top archaeologist, Zahi Hawass.

Twenty-two mummies were found in niches along the tomb’s walls, and the eight sarcophagi one of which was opened are expected to also have mummies.

Most of the mummies were in poor condition, and archeologists have yet to determine why so many were put in one room.  “We think it is Old Kingdom, maybe Fifth Dynasty,” archaeologist Abdel Hakim Karar told Reuters. The Fifth Dynasty ruled Egypt from about 2,494 BC to 2,345 BC.

The name Badi N Huri was engraved into the opened sarcophagus, but the wooden coffin did not bear a title for the mummy.

Excavations have been ongoing at Saqqara for 150 years, uncovering a necropolis of pyramids and tombs dating mostly from the Old Kingdom but also tombs from as recent as the Roman era. In the past, excavations have focused on just one side of the site’s two most prominent pyramids — the famous Step Pyramid of King Djoser and that of Unas, the last king of the 5th Dynasty. The area where the current tomb was found, to the southwest, has been largely untouched by archeologists.

The “storeroom for mummies” dates back to 640 B.C. during the 26th Dynasty, which was Egypt’s last independent kingdom before it was overthrown by a succession of foreign conquerors beginning with the Persians, Hawass said. But the tomb was discovered at an even older site in Saqqara that dates back to the 4,300-year-old 6th Dynasty, he said.

According to Hawass, only 30 percent of Egypt’s monuments have been uncovered, with the rest still under the sand.


Comments

Got something to say? **Please Note** - Comments may be edited for clarity or obscenity, and all comments are published at the discretion of ChattahBox.com - Comments are the opinions of the individuals leaving them, and not of ChattahBox.com or its partners. - Please do not spam or submit comments that use copyright materials, hearsay or are based on reports where the supposed fact or quote is not a matter of public knowledge are also not permitted.