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Thursday, 29 October 2020

In Photos: A collection of 59 intact 26th Dynasty coffins unearthed in Egypt's Saqqara Necropolis

All the unearthed coffins are in a very good conservation condition and still bear their original colours

Nevine El-Aref , Saturday 3 Oct 2020
Saqqara
A sarcophagus that is around 2500 years old, is seen inside the newly discovered burial site near Egypt's Saqqara necropolis, in Giza, Egypt, October 3, 2020. REUTERS
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An Egyptian archaeological mission uncovered a large collection of intact and sealed coffins at Saqqara Necropolis.

Sixty ambassadors and international media representatives flocked to the scene on Saturday to witness the announcement of the new discovery. 

On site, almost 40 anthropoid painted coffins were placed in a large tent, while the rest of the coffins were put on display inside tombs.

Minister of Tourism and Antiquities Khaled El-Enaby said an Egyptian mission started re-excavating the site two months ago and succeeded to uncover a burial shaft 11 metres deep where there were more than 13 anthropoid intact and sealed coffins.

More excavations revealed two more shafts, 10 and 12 metres deep, filled with a large number of intact and sealed coffins. The mission succeeded to unearth 59 coffins thus far.

All the unearthed coffins are in a very good conservation condition and still bear their original colours.

“My colleagues in the Supreme Council of Antiquities discovered burial shafts filled with wooden, sealed and intact coffins. I am really impressed that Covid-19 did not stop them from digging to unveil more mystery and secrets about our great civilisation,” El-Enany said.

He added the coffins will be transferred to the Grand Egyptian Museum to be displayed in the hall adjacent to the one housing the Asasif Cachette.

Mostafa Waziri, the secretary-general of the Supreme Council of Antiquities said preliminary studies showed the coffins belong to 26th Dynasty priests, top officials, and elites. There are mummies in the majority of the coffins.

A collection of 28 statuettes of Ptah-Soker, the main god of Saqqara Necropolis, were found along with a beautifully carved 35cm tall bronze statuette of god Nefertum, inlaid with precious stones. On its base is written the name of its owner, Priest Badi-Amun.

Collections of amulets and ushabti figurine were also unearthed.  

Saqqara
Sarcophagi that are around 2500 years old, are seen inside the newly discovered burial site near Egypt's Saqqara necropolis, in Giza, Egypt, October 3, 2020. REUTERS

Saqqara
Sarcophagi that are around 2500 years old, are seen inside the newly discovered burial site near Egypt's Saqqara necropolis, in Giza, Egypt, October 3, 2020. REUTERS

Saqqara
A sarcophagus that is around 2500 years old, is seen inside the newly discovered burial site near Egypt's Saqqara necropolis, in Giza, Egypt, October 3, 2020. REUTERS

Saqqara
A sarcophagus that is around 2500 years old, is seen inside the newly discovered burial site near Egypt's Saqqara necropolis, in Giza, Egypt, October 3, 2020. REUTERS

Saqqara
A sarcophagus that is around 2500 years old, is seen inside the newly discovered burial site near Egypt's Saqqara necropolis, in Giza, Egypt, October 3, 2020. REUTERS

Saqqara
Sarcophagi that are around 2500 years old, are seen inside the newly discovered burial site near Egypt's Saqqara necropolis, in Giza, Egypt, October 3, 2020. REUTERS

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