In Photos: German-Egyptian archaeological mission uncovers new remains at Matariya’s Sun Temple

Nevine El-Aref , Friday 17 Mar 2023

The German-Egyptian archaeological mission has recently uncovered remains of Matariya’s Sun Temple in the areas west and south of the Heliopolis Open Air Museum in Matariya on the outskirts of Cairo.

The German-Egyptian archaeological mission at Matariya uncovers more remains of the city s Sun Temple. Egyptian Ministry of Tourism


Aymen Ashmawy, head of the Ancient Egyptian Antiquities Sector and director of the mission's Egyptian branch, said that the excavations showed evidence of a temple inventory to the west of the museum.

The finds included quartzite nose fragments belonging to King Horemheb (c. 1300 BC) and others made of greywacke belonging to King Psamtik II (595–589 BC).

The second area of investigation, south of the open-air museum, contained limestone pavement slabs preserved on a surface of approximately 15x15 metres, along with an interesting assemblage of fragments belonging to royal statues.

Dietrich Raue, director of the German Archaeological Institute in Egypt and director of the mission's German branch, explained that the mission found a sequence of white-plastered mud-brick architecture and flooring dating to the second half of the first millennium BC.

Additional pits in this area contained debris including statue bases belonging to Pharaoh Ramses II.

Numerous fragments from at least five quartzite statues were also found, including some depicting Ramses II as a sphinx and others dating to the reign of Ramses IX.

In addition, the excavations brought to light a fragment of red granite with an inscription that might belong to the upper part of an obelisk.

The joint mission is being conducted in Matariya and Heliopolis by the Ministry of Tourism and Antiquities, the Egyptian Museum at the University of Leipzig, the University of Applied Sciences in Mainz, the German Archaeological Institute and generously supported by the American University in Cairo and the French Institute for Oriental Archaeology in Cairo.

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