CAIRO – 17 March 2022: In the early hours of March 17, Egypt’s Minister of Tourism and Antiquities Khaled el-Enani inspected the excavations of the Egyptian archaeological mission working northwest of the Pyramid of Merenre in Saqqara.
The excavations resulted in the discovery of five carved tombs containing many burials and archaeological finds from the Old Kingdom and the First Transition Period.
Enani was accompanied by Mostafa Waziri, head of the Supreme Council of Antiquities and head of the mission. Also, Enani was keen to enter one of the tombs to inspect the inscriptions and archaeological finds inside, in order to encourage the workers of the mission.
Moreover, Enani thanked the team for the efforts that this generation of archaeologists are making, which resulted in unprecedented discoveries on a regular basis while relying solely on Egyptian expertise.
Waziri explained that the first discovered tomb belongs to a person who is believed to be a high-ranking statesman. It consists of a well that leads to a burial chamber whose walls are carved with scenes of many funerary rituals, including offering tables, the facade of the palace, and the seven oil pots. It also contains a huge sarcophagus of limestone, and carved pieces belonging to the owner of the tomb, which the mission is now working on assembling.
As for the second tomb, it most likely belongs to the wife of a person called "Yart", because of its proximity to his tomb. It consists of a rectangular well.
The third cemetery is for a person who held several positions, including the supervisor of the great house, the chanted priest, and the house purifier, while the fourth tomb is a rectangular well located at a depth of about 6 meters below the surface of the ground for a woman, whi bore the following titles of decorator of the kings and queens, and priestess of the goddess Hathor.
Furthermore, a fifth cemetery was discovered and consists of a rectangular well located at a depth of about 7 meters and belongs to a male who bore the titles of the supervisor of the royal palace, the only prince, the hereditary prince and the mayor, the supervisor of the Great House, the bearer of the seals of Lower Egypt, and the supervisor of the orchard.
The mission will continue excavations at the site to discover more of its secrets. They are currently working on cleaning these tombs and documenting all the finds.
It is worth noting that the Egyptian archaeological mission had announced over the past years a number of important archaeological discoveries in the Saqqara archaeological area, including the discovery of hundreds of colorful human coffins containing mummies in a good state of preservation for senior statesmen and priests of the 26th Dynasty, which came among the top 10 archaeological discoveries in the world for the year 2020.
This is in addition to the discovery of the tombs of the purified priest “Wahti” and the supervisor of the royal palace and a number of cat tombs, all dating back to the Fifth Dynasty.