Egyptian archeologists unearth 45 ancient tombs

13:35, May 24, 2010      

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An Egyptian archeological team announced on Sunday the discovery of 45 ancient tombs in the governorate of Fayoum, south of Cairo, last week.

Dr. Abdel Rahman El-Aydi, head of the archaeological mission, said in a statement that the 45 tombs were discovered in four cemeteries in a site called "Lahoun".

The first cemetery dates back to the first and second Egyptian dynasties (3,050-2,687 BC), the second to the Middle Kingdom (2, 134 -2,061 BC), the third dates to the Modern Kingdom (1,569-1,081 BC) and the fourth to the Late Period (724-333 BC).

The first and second cemeteries include 14 tombs. One of the tombs is almost completely intact, including all of its funerary equipment and a wooden casket with a mummy wrapped with linen.

The two other cemeteries contain 31 tombs, most of which date back to the 11th and 12th dynasties (2,030-1,840 BC), El-Aydai said.

Each tomb of the collection contains painted wooden casket with a mummy kept intact inside, a statement by the Egyptian Council of Antiquities (SCA) said.

SCA chief Dr. Zahi Hawass said one of the tombs unearthed during the excavation work contains 12 caskets piled up over each others inside.

According to the statement, the discovered mummies are completely intact as they are covered with cartonnage - a layer of linen and gypsum - decorated with religious texts from the Book of the Dead and scenes featuring different ancient Egyptian deities.

Last year, the mission discovered 53 sarcophagi dating back to the Middle and Modern pharaonic dynasties and the Roman age in the same site.

Source: Xinhua


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