Quantcast
Connect with us

Egypt unveils trove of well-preserved ancient coffins excavated in Luxor

Published

on

Egypt revealed on Saturday a rare trove of 30 ancient wooden coffins that have been well-preserved over millennia in the archaeologically rich Valley of the Kings in Luxor.

The antiquities ministry officially unveiled the discovery made at Asasif, a necropolis on the west bank of the Nile River, at a press conference against the backdrop of the Hatshepsut Temple.

ADVERTISEMENT

“This is the first discovery in Asasif by dedicated Egyptian hands, comprised of archaeologists, conservationists and workers,” head of the Supreme Council of Antiquities, Mostafa al-Waziri, told reporters.

The 30 ornately decorated coffins of men, women and children were found only a metre (three feet) underground, stacked in two rows. They are believed to belong to family members of high priests.

Waziri explained that excavations of the site in the 19th century had revealed royal tombs, but this latest discovery had yielded a collection of priests’ burials.

The sarcophagi date back to the 22nd Dynasty, founded around 3,000 years ago in the 10th century BC.

Despite their age, black, green, red and yellow paintings of snakes, birds, lotus flowers and hieroglyphics that cover the coffins are still clearly visible.

ADVERTISEMENT

“We only did remedial first-aid on these well-preserved coffins. They are considered to be in great condition because there were hardly any settlements” around the site, local antiquities ministry restorer Saleh Abdel-Gelil told AFP.

According to Antiquities Minister Khaled el-Enany, discoveries of ancient Egyptian relics had slowed after the 2011 Arab Spring revolution that toppled long-time autocrat Hosni Mubarak and plunged the country in political turmoil.

But several high-level officials, including President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi, have in recent weeks affirmed Egypt’s stability following rare, small-scale protests in September that drew a heavy-handed response from security forces.

ADVERTISEMENT

“Some people, we don’t have to mention names, don’t want us to have these discoveries… that impress the world,” said Enany before throngs of tourists, referring to Egypt’s detractors.

“These discoveries are priceless for Egypt’s reputation,” he added.

ADVERTISEMENT

Enany said the “important” Asasif collection will be moved to the recently opened Grand Egyptian Museum next year.

Egypt has sought to promote its archaeological heritage and recent finds in a bid to revive its vital tourism sector, which has suffered due to political insecurity and terror attacks.

However, critics point to archaeological sites and museums suffering from negligence and poor management.

ADVERTISEMENT


Report typos and corrections to: [email protected].
READ COMMENTS - JOIN THE DISCUSSION
Continue Reading

2020 Election

McConnell bluntly defends working with Trump to undermine impeachment: ‘We’re on the same side’

Published

on

Speaking in Kentucky on Friday afternoon, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) blithely blew off concerns about coordinating with Donald Trump's White House on how to handle the president's defense in the expected impeachment trial.

One day after admitting on Fox News that he was working hand-in-hand with the White House on impeachment tactics, McConnell was very blunt about his motivations when asked about his admission.

In a clip shared by MSNBC, the Senate leader was pressed about his plans.

"You told Sean Hannity last night you were coordinating with the White House when it comes to impeachment. Why is that appropriate?" McConnell was asked.

Continue Reading

Facebook

In impeachment spotlight, dueling views of professionalism appear

Published

on

Impeachment hearings have thrust a handful of public servants into the spotlight, where competing ideas about government professionals – variously called the establishment, the “deep state,” technocrats, bureaucrats, experts and elites – shape public reaction to their testimony.

Continue Reading
 

Facebook

The heroes of Bastogne: 75 years on

Published

on

The Battle of the Bulge was the last German offensive of World War II, and the Siege of Bastogne the scene of a heroic defence by American paratroopers.

Seventy-five years on, the Belgian town is hosting a weekend of colourful re-enactments followed by solemn ceremonies of remembrance.

Veterans, historians and military enthusiasts will join international officials to mark the now legendary close quarters battle on a snowbound wooded plateau.

Bastogne's relief in late December 1944 by General George "Old Blood and Guts" Patton helped seal his reputation as one of America's military giants.

Continue Reading