Huge tomb found in Saqqara

Egyptian archaeologists have unearthed the largest tomb ever found in the necropolis of Saqqara south of Cairo. Carved out of limestone, the tomb dates to to the 26th Dynasty (664 -525 B.C.) and was found near the entrance of the necropolis.

The tomb consists of a big hall hewn out of the limestone rock.

There are a number of small rooms and passageways where ancient coffins, skeletons and well-preserved clay pots were discovered, as well as the mummies of eagles.

Egypt’s chief archaeologist, Zahi Hawass, who announced the discovery, said that early investigations showed that although the tomb dated back to the 26th Dynasty, it had been used several times.

It was certainly opened several times, and appears to have been robbed at the end of the Roman era, around the 5th c. A.D. It is so large it took Hawass two hours just to walk around inside of it.

Various stories have said the mummified birds were either eagles, falcons or hawks, so I’m not sure which one is correct. If they were representatives of the god Horus (which would make sense in a funerary context), they were probably falcons as he is usually depicted as a man with the head of a falcon.

The team also found another limestone tomb right next to it, this one sealed with many clay pots and ancient coffins scattered around.

Newly-discovered Saqqara tomb

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6 Comments »

Comment by Tilitoli
2010-01-06 00:44:05

This tomb must be very large if it took him two hours to walk around. (One or two kilometers???)Have you got any information about the length of the tomb? They should draw its map.

Comment by livius drusus
2010-01-06 00:58:25

I’ve read as many articles as I can find on this tomb, but I’m afraid none of them give the dimensions of the large chamber.

 
 
Comment by Tilitoli
2010-01-06 10:07:36

O, thanks. Really kind of you. :hattip:

Comment by livius drusus
2010-01-06 20:14:59

I’ll keep looking. :)

 
 
Comment by Sarah
2010-01-06 11:28:51

I can’t for the life of me figure out what that picture is showing us. Is that the entrance to the necropolis, the entrance to the tomb, or someone going down one of the side chambers? Way to not give us anything for perspective Mr. Photographer!

Comment by livius drusus
2010-01-06 20:16:14

Ainorite?! I think it’s the entrance to the tomb, that’s why there’s that long cable coming out/going in to power the lights.

 
 
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