Tuesday, February 09, 2010

In the field: The latest dig diary updates

Saqqara Digging Diary Week 4

The beginning of this week brought clouded weather and even a little rain, but then the weather improved and we had a number of days with glorious sunshine and high temperatures. All this helped to make great progress with the fieldwork. The new mud-brick tomb is gradually emerging from the sand, and since last week we have gone down about a full metre over the whole surface of our sondage. But unfortunately, so far the few limestone elements that we can see are all unfinished, undecorated and uninscribed. This goes for the doorjambs of the east entrance into the forecourt, for the jambs of the door into the central chapel, and for a pilaster against the north wall. On top of that, most of the wall revetment seems to have been robbed away.

The new mud-brick tomb is gradually emerging This means, of course, that we are unable to give you the name of the mysterious tomb-owner. The few inscribed fragments of objects dating to the New Kingdom and found in the sand fill of the tomb are not decisive: they may have come from adjacent tombs, and some of them look Ramesside in date whereas we would be tempted to date the tomb itself to the late 18th Dynasty.

Brooklyn Museum

With some great pics.

A view south from the precinct’s north enclosure wall of the whole area where we are now working. At the left are Chapel D and the Taharqa Gate; in the center the paving of the approach to the gate; and in the upper right the two squares we have opened on the high ground west of the gate.

Before I get to the work, I want to welcome back William and Elsie Peck, who arrived this week. Bill has been with the Mut Expedition longer than anyone except me, while Elsie joined us in 1979, which was also Mary’s first year. Bill’s first job this season is to map the new paving west of the Taharqa Gate. Elsie once again has taken on keeping the digging records, beginning with what Mahmoud Abbadi is doing in the corridor south of the Taharqa Gate.

Proyecto Djehuty

Joan ha comenzado topografiando algunos sectores del exterior, especialmente en lo alto del yacimiento, donde está excavando Carlos. En uno de los extremos ha comenzado a salir a la luz un depósito de cerámica de principios de la dinastía XVIII, por lo que decidimos ampliar la cuadrícula de excavación. Un par de horas después, Joan y el mudir se han sumergido en las profundidades del pozo funerario de Djehuty para topografiar en detalle la cámara sepulcral, no sólo la estructura, sino también los detalles más sobresalientes de la decoración y de la disposición del texto, las faltas de estuco y las grietas.

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