At the beginning of September, we gave you the premiere the discovery in Saqqara of 13 coffins more than 2,500 years old and completely sealed, a figure that almost doubled weeks later. And now, after more excavations, it has reached 59.
Egypt’s Tourism and Antiquities Minister Khalid el-Anany said Saturday that archaeologists had unearthed dozens of ancient coffins from the sands of Bubasteum, an area of the Saqqara archaeological site dedicated to the cat goddess Bastet, the guarantor of love. , harmony and protection. He also specified that they were extracted from three different wells, totaling 59 in total and that most contained mummies inside. However, he added that that would not be all.
“I think this is just the beginning of a great discovery,” he said. “There are still an unknown number of coffins buried in the same area.”
According to the general secretary of the Supreme Council of Antiquities, Mustafa Waziri, all the mummies belong to high priests and officials of Ancient Egypt who lived in the ancient capital of Memphis, something unusual in this location where mummified animals are usually found.
“There are not only cat mummies here, we are talking about the acolytes of Bastet and finding such a large number of human mummies means that they worshiped them during the late, middle and new periods,” Waziri noted.
Witnessed historic event this morning. The presentation of the new archeological finds #Saqqara. 59 mummies, coffins ⚰️ & artifacts. Mummy casks opened for the 1st time. Great moment for ??, for the world ? and future Tourism #Worldheritage @ KhaledElEnany6 @TourismandAntiq pic.twitter.com/fxK5eLUyMk
— SweAmbEgypt (@SweAmbEgypt) October 3, 2020
The presentation of the find took place at the foot of the stepped pyramid of Djoser, where the coffins were exhibited, with one of them open before reporters to show the mummy inside. Several foreign diplomats attended the announcement ceremony.
Honoured to be invited by the Minister of Tourism and Antiquities HE Khaled El Anany to Saqqara for the announcement that a new tomb of mummies has been discovered. I saw one being opened for the first time in 2600 years! Truly amazing! @TourismandAntiq @MFATNZ ???? pic.twitter.com/5oLfAM7zAV
— Greg Lewis ???? (@NZinEgypt) October 3, 2020
According to el-Anany, the final destination of these objects from beyond the grave will be the new Great Egyptian Museum, which is currently being built near the pyramids of Giza.