Sunday, October 11, 2009

New Tombs Discovered at Dra Abu el Naga (LUXOR)

They have just started excavation in this area, Dra Abu al-Naga, on the west bank of Luxor, which is a known site for tombs of the nobles. Work here has already uncovered some new tombs.

One of these tomb owners was named Amun-em-Opet, which they know as it was written on a seal found in the tomb. The name of Amun was scratched out of the tomb reliefs, probably during the Amarna Period, by people attempting to remove all signs of the god Amun, who was not in favor at that time.Around the beginning of the Third Intermediate Period, the tomb was reused by Ray, as preserved on one shawabti found inside. Shawabtis were objects often placed in tombs, they had the deceased’s name on them and were intended to assist the deceased in the afterlife.

The Egyptian expedition is also working in another area on the west bank of Luxor, which looks very promising.  Two important new tombs have been found here.  One is a Late Period tomb of a high priest of the god Montu whose name is not clear in the inscriptions.  In the scenes decorating the front of the tomb, the deceased is shown with his wife worshipping the god Montu.  Next to this are scenes of other gods, including Isis, Osiris and Nepthys. The team has not excavated the inside of the tomb yet, as there is a lot of stone rubble that needs to be removed.  The second new tomb belongs to a man named Ankh-min, a preliminary look dates it to the reign of Ramses III.  This tomb also has scenes of the deceased on the entrance, including one of the deceased in front of Osiris.  This tomb also looks as though it may have been reused in later times, but further excavation is needed to know for certain.
This expedition will continue the important work of excavating, recording and conserving the tombs of this area.  I think it will be very interesting to follow the work that will tell us much more about this exciting new site.

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