This week, during their routine excavation work, the French-Egyptian archaeological team working at the Karnak Temple in Luxor uncovered two major monuments. The first is the wall that once enclosed the New Kingdom temple of the god Petah and the second is a gate dated back to the reign of 25th dynasty King Shabaka (712-698 BC).
Christophe Tiers, director of the Karnak French mission, said that the mission has also unearthed a number of engraved blocks from the Petah temple. During the restoration process, archaeologists realised that the blocks date to the reign of King Tuthmosis III (1479-1425 BC) which means that the construction of the temple started under Egyptian rule and not during the Ptolemaic dynasty as was previously thought.
Ptolemaic mud brick walls which surrounded the temple were also uncovered.
Dominique Velballe, professor at the faculty of archaeology at the Sorbonne, said that French restorers are now carrying out comprehensive work to reconstruct the temple and open it to the public next year.
She pointed out the gate of King Shabaka is a very distinguished gate that once closed off the jewellery hall of the king. It is decorated with distinguished Egyptian paintings and is very well preserved.
Among the paintings is a scene depicting the king offering the justice sign of Maat to the god Amun Re.
Mansour Boreih, general supervisor of the Luxor monuments, asserted that the Karnak Temple has not yet been completely uncovered and is still hiding more of its historical secrets.