Saturday, March 21, 2009

Karnak 2008 Report

Thanks very much to Jane Akshar's Luxor News blog for this link to a 25-page report about work carried out at the Temples of Karnak. The report is accompanied by a site map, some excellent photographs and illustrations.

Here's an extract from the introduction:

During the year 2008, the programs of research, documentation and restoration of the Center and of the French and foreign missions occuring within the framework of the CFEETK were able to be done in a suitable conditions. The programs submited to the Joined Committee in December 2007 took place according to the planned calendar and were realized in good conditions.

The program concerning the Osirian cults were devoted to the excavations and studies of the area of the chapel of Osiris Wennefer Neb-djefau including the neighbouring area, the temple of Osiris from Coptos, the temple of Opet and the temple of Khonsu.

Among the important topics developed these last years, the archaeological investigations of the central zone and of the south-eastern sector of the Sacred lake led to important results which need now more precise examination. Several missions were thus devoted to the study of the uncovered materials for the final publications.

The study of the scattered limestone blocks belonging to monuments of Amenhotep I continued. Many checks allowed to confirm or to revalue the epigraphical and architectural hypothesis firstly proposed last season.

In the hypostyle hall, the program of photographic survey of columns was able to be brought to a successful conclusion thanks to a close collaboration between CFEETK, the national School of the geographical sciences (ENSG) and ATM3D company, allowing within a month to acquire a complete photographic survey of the 134 columns.

The study of the landscape evolution at Karnak during the Antiquity continued, using core drillings and tomographic profiles.

The important work realized in front of the temple as well as those developed in the city of Luxor (sphinx avenue) led by Mansour Boraik (CSA) was followed with attention and specially concern the excavations of the ptolemaic baths and the quay. This work brought to light new informations about the history of the entrance area of the Amun precinct.

One of the main activity on the field was to reassembly the wire saw (used to cut the stones) on the eastern side of Karnak temples. However, the anastylosis of the calcite chapel of Tuthmosis III was begun in the Open Air Museum. The programs of restoration and conservation were able to develop normally (temple of Opet, limestone blocks, archaeological materials…). These restoration efforts and anastylosis programs are making the site more inviting for numerous tourists coming at Karnak.

See the above page for the full report.

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