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Funeral relics of pharaonic singer unearthed at Saqqara necropolis

Three painted sarcophagi belonging to an Ancient Egyptian singer have been unearthed at Saqqara

Nevine El-Aref , Saturday 17 May 2014
Sarcophagus of pharaonic-era singer
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During excavation works carried out in Bastet cemetery at the Saqqara necropolis just outside Cairo, French archaeologists stumbled upon three wooden sarcophagi belonging to Ta-Ekht, a singer in a sacred choir in the 18th dynasty period (1543–1292 BC).

Mohamed Ibrahim, the antiquities minister, said that the sarcophagi were found inside each other. The outer sarcophagus is a little deteriorated while the middle and inner ones are well-preserved.

Ibrahim told Ahram Online on Saturday that the sarcophagi were unearthed during excavation works at the tomb of the daughter of 18th dynasty pharaoh Akhenaten, Maya, who was known as Meritee Atun.

Ali El-Asfar, head of the ancient Egyptian antiquities department at the ministry told Ahram Online that the sarcophagi depict the facial features of Ta-Ekht and are decorated with paintings of foliage.

Some elements of Ta-Ekht's funerary collection were also found inside the middle sarcophagus, including two wooden headrests and a rectangular wooden box inlaid with ivory.

The box contained a collection of beauty tools were found, including a spoon with a gazelle-shaped handle, two eye liner containers, a collection of faience beads, and a faience amulet in the famous “eye of Horus” shape.

El-Asfar said that studies are now being conducted to find out why the singer’s sarcophagi were located inside Maya tomb.

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