Tuesday, September 25, 2007

More re recent discoveries in the tomb of Tutankahmun

Zahi Hawass has provided an update on the recent story regarding discoveries of artefacts in the tomb of Tutankhamun, which were not included on the official inventory, describing the contents of baskets and vessels which were found.

Reuters Africa
Egyptian archaeologists working in the tomb of the boy pharaoh Tutankhamun have found baskets and intact clay pots apparently overlooked when the tomb was cleared out in the 1920s, the government said on Monday.

The 20 clay pots, sealed with Tutankhamun's name, probably contain seeds and the remains of drinks, a government statement said, quoting chief government archaeologist Zahi Hawass.

One of the baskets contains dried fruit and eight others hold almost 60 small limestone plaques also inscribed with Tutankhamun's name in the traditional cartouche format.


A team of Egyptian archaeologists, led by antiquities supremo Zahi Hawass, made the disovery in the Valley of the Kings in the ancient city of Thebes, the modern-day Luxor, in southern Egypt.

"The eight baskets contained large quantities of doum fruits, which have been well preserved," Hawass said in a statement.

The fruit baskets are each 50cm (nearly 20 inches) high, the antiquities department said.

The sweet orange-red fruit, also known as the gingerbread fruit, comes from the Doum Palm, a native of southern Egypt, and was traditionally offered at funerals.

Twenty pear-shaped containers, one metre (three feet) in height and bearing Tutankhamun's official seal were also discovered.

Both articles are brief, but see the above for more.


Anonymous said...

This is unbelievable. Having been in this very small tomb, I cannot possibly imagine these articles could have been "overlooked." Even in comparison to the vast riches there, it is hard to imagine how ANYTHING could have been overlooked.
Tony Vita
Anchorage, Alaska

Andie said...

I do most sincerely empathize with you - the intial reaction to the very first news reports on the subject by nearly everyone I know was that the story was a hoax. It beggars belief, but it appears to be true. My guess (a completely uninformed guess, I have to say) is that the artefacts weren't undiscovered, but somehow failed to be recorded in the main inventory. Anything else would seem to be completely bizarre. It would be nice to know the truth behind the story.

Scrabcake said...

My impression of a lot of egyptologists (and given, my experience has been with the ones not of an archaeological background) is that they tend to have eyes for the big finds alone. Food baskets and clay seals aren't really glamorous, at least not compared to the rest of Tut's tomb, so it's pretty easy to see how a workman could have carried it off to storage without Carter and co. noticing or caring.
I got a little jaded on my first (hopefully not my last) dig.