Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Egypt finds granite statue, likely of Ramses II

Reuters Africa

Egyptian archaeologists have discovered a granite statue probably depicting the head of Ramses II, one of ancient Egypt's most powerful pharaohs, the country's culture ministry said on Wednesday.

Researchers discovered the statue 150 cm (five feet) under ground in the eastern Nile Delta town of Tell Basta, which was once the capital of ancient Egypt, the culture ministry said.

The pink granite statue had a broken nose and a missing beard, Zahi Hawass, the head of Egypt's Supreme Council of Antiquities, said in a statement.

Archaeologists are continuing to dig around the site in hopes of finding the rest of the statue and possible remains of a temple built by Ramses, he said.

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