Egyptian archaeologists tout the first among the latest discoveries unearthed in the ancient city of Luxor


Cairo Egyptian archaeologists announced Wednesday the discovery of the first burial site in the city of Luxor dating back to the 13th Dynasty of ancient Egypt. That means the sarcophagi, remains and artifacts found at the site, in Luxor’s Dra’ Abu el-Naga’ necropolis, date back nearly 4,000 years, sometime between 1803 B.C. C. and 1649 a. c.

“We have discovered over a thousand burial sites before in Luxor, but this is the first time we have found one from the 13th Dynasty,” Dr. Fathy Yaseen, Director General of Upper Egyptian Antiquities, told CBS News of the site, that is more than 50 yards wide and 70 yards long.

Among the discoveries at the burial site was a complete sarcophagus made of pink granite, weighing about 11 tons, inscribed with the name of a minister named Ankho, who lived during the reign of King Sobekhotep II during the 13th Dynasty.

There were also some “Ushabtis”, small statuettes, made of wood and painted white to imitate limestone, which caught the attention of experts.


“I have been working in this field for more than 25 years and this is the first time I have seen Ushabtis with scripts written in hieratic instead of hieroglyphics,” Yaseen told CBS News. Hieratic was the common written form of Ancient Egyptian between the 3rd millennium BC and the mid-1st millennium BC.

An “Entire City” Unearthed

Archaeologists also announced this week that they had unearthed a “complete city” dating to Roman times to the east of Luxor.

The Egyptian Archaeological Mission said on Tuesday that the city is located near the Luxor Temple.

It was described in a statement by the Ministry of Tourism and Antiquities as “the oldest and most important residential city” on the eastern bank of Luxor. It is believed to be an extension of the city of Thebes.

“It’s important because it shows us more about life for normal Egyptians right now,” Yaseen told CBS News, adding that scientists “had only discovered the northern part of the city so far.”

The discovery includes some residential buildings, workshops and two pigeon towers, used to house pigeons or pigeons, dating to the 2nd and 3rd centuries, according to the statement.


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