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Archaeology Watch

Courtiers and Donkeys Buried to Escort Pharaonic Kings in Afterlife, New Discoveries Reveal
Monday, March 15 (Issue 5)
by Raymon Kondos

CAIRO ( - A US mission revealed 6 tombs of courtiers and servants of King Aha, who is probably the first or second king of the 1st dynasty of the Pharaonic era, at the early dynastic necropolis of Abydos , some 490 kms south of Cairo.

According to culture minister Farouk Hosni, “no important monument has been found for this king since famous archeologist Flinders Petrie discovered his tomb in 1900.”
Burials of donkeys
Burials of donkeys that should
accompany kings in afterlife

The tombs surround a very well preserved chapel of the king, all part of a mud-brick royal enclosure. The courtiers were intended to serve the king in the afterlife, who was buried some few hundred meters away.

Next to Aha's complex, another enclosure of an unknown first dynasty king was discovered. Strikingly, three attached subsidiary graves contained bodies of the ten donkeys were surfaced in the enclosure. “They are intended to meet the king's transportation needs in the afterlife,” said Zahi Hawas, Egyptian head of the antiquities department.

William Kelly Simpson from Yake University explained that royal enclosures and tombs of first dynasty kings were associated with subsidiary graves of courtiers and servants around each monument to serve the king in the afterlife.

Debate rose among archeologists on whether the dead courtiers were sacrificed with or just they were buried after their normal death.

The US mission is a joint venture by University of Pennsylvania Museum, Yale University and Institute of Fine Arts and New York University .

he discoveries were initially detected by a sub-surface magnetic survey which revealed maps and locations of the anciently buried structures.

Egypt Retrieves Three Ancient Relics from US.
Monday, March 15 (Issue 5)

by Raymon Kondos

CAIRO ( - Cairo received few days ago three ancient pieces stolen from Egypt and put into sale in New York

Zahi Hawas, Egyptian head of antiquities, traveled to New York to get the pieces.

The first of these pieces is a limestone slab with hieroglyphic inscriptions and human image. The piece is part of collection of Frederick Schultz, a famous antiquity dealer who was brought to court in the USA 8 years ago for his notorious activity.

The other pieces are a clay vase and a faience necklace. Those items were sold to an American citizen some 15 years ago at a London auction hall. The man decided to voluntarily return them back to Egypt.

The Egyptian antiquities authority says as much as 500 pieces were retrieved back since April 2002, when a special committee to retrieve stolen antiquities were established.

. 4000-year-old tomb of Egyptian official unearthed at Saqqara
(issue 1)
. Thousands of antiquities retrieved from sunken city at the Mediterranean Sea (issue 2)
. New Kalabsha Island Turns into an Open-Air Museum (issue 3)
. Website Brings Life to Egypt’s Monuments (issue 4)

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