Egyptian archaeologists and researchers recently uncovered a treasure trove of artifacts, including what may be the oldest and most intact mummy ever found.
A team of Egyptologists announced Thursday the discovery of several ancient tombs in a pharaonic necropolis just outside the capital Cairo. Among the finds: a mummy belonging to a man known as Heka-shepes was sealed in a large rectangular limestone sarcophagus around 4,300 years ago, excavation director Zahi Hawass said in an Instagram post.
The mummy, “found covered in gold leaf inside … may be the oldest and most complete mummy found in Egypt to date,” he said.
A find dating back to around 2500 BC. Ave. Cr. until 2100 Ave. BC, in the fifth and sixth dynasties of the Old Kingdom, is part of a year-long excavation near the pyramids of Saqqara.
The new discoveries were made under an ancient stone enclosure known as Gisr el-Mudir. “I poked my head in to see what was inside the sarcophagus: a beautiful mummy of a man completely covered in layers of gold,” Hawass told The Associated Press.
Also uncovered: the tomb belonged to a priest from the fifth dynasty known as Khnumdjedef, while another tomb belonged to a palace official named Meri, who held the title of “keeper of secrets,” the team said.
Other major finds from the excavations include statues, amulets and a well-preserved sarcophagus.
Ancient Egyptian family plot found
Archaeologists have also made several recent discoveries about 400 miles to the south, including a family burial plot dating back some 4,000 years.
The burial, found at the Dra Abu el-Naga necropolis (or cemetery) on the west bank of the Nile in Luxor, is the first to be found from ancient Egypt’s Thirteenth Dynasty, dating from after 1780 BC. According to Egyptologist Mostafa Waziry, secretary general of the Supreme Council of Antiquities at the Egyptian Ministry of Tourism and Antiquities.
“The discovery is the first of its kind,” Waziry posted on Instagram.
A pink granite sarcophagus weighing about 11 tons was discovered at the site, inscribed with the name of a minister named Ankho who lived during the reign of King Sobekhotep II during the 13th dynasty, said Fathy Yaseen, director general of Upper Egypt’s antiquities. CBS News about the site.
“We have previously found more than a thousand burial sites in Luxor, but this is the first time we have found one from the 13th Dynasty,” Yaseen said.
Journalists killed:World death toll rises sharply in war and political instability: report
Russo-Ukrainian War:Russian missiles hit Ukraine after major US-German tank deal
Also discovered nearby: “The most important and oldest inhabited city” dating back to the Roman era, Waziry posted on Instagram. He also posted videos of the finds on Facebook and Twitter.
The city, which is believed to be part of the ancient city of Thebes along the Nile and Luxor, “is important because it shows us more about the lives of ordinary Egyptians at this time,” Yaseen told CBS News.
Researchers ‘digitally unwrap’ ancient Egyptian mummy
Cairo University researchers announced another archaeological advance on Tuesday. In the journal Frontiers of Medicine, they describe how they “digitally unwrapped” a teenage boy from 300 years ago. Ave. Cr. mummy using CT scans.
The research team was able to shed new light on the boy’s high social status by confirming the intricate details of the amulets placed on his mummified body and the type of his burial.
Archaeological finds could help revive Egypt’s tourism
Ancient Egyptian discoveries are often used to boost the country’s tourism, which is an important source of income for the North African country. Tourism has suffered a decline since the political turmoil and violence that followed the 2011 coup. Arab spring revolutions.
Tourism, which made up about 12 percent of the country’s economy, also hit hard by the coronavirus outbreak, in 2021. February. The Egypt Independent newspaper reported. In addition, tourism was hindered by the war in Ukraine, it was reported last year.
Contributed by: The Associated Press.
Dig deeper: mummies, other ancient and archaeological finds
Follow Mike Snider on Twitter: @mikesnider.
What’s everyone talking about?:Subscribe to our popular newsletter to get the latest news of the day