Archaeologists near Cairo, Egypt recently uncovered a treasure trove filled with 250 mummies and countless ancient artifacts dating to around 500 BC.
The stunning finds, which include statues of the ancient Egyptian gods Anubis, Amun, Min, Osiris, Isis, Nefertum, Bastet, and Hathor, were detailed in an announcement made by the Egyptian Ministry of Tourism and Antiquities on Monday.
Archaeologists digging in a cemetery in Saqqara, an ancient site which has been proven to hold countless ancient treasures, uncovered 250 coffins containing mummies, 150 statues made of bronze, and other artifacts during recent excavations.
The coffins, which are wooden and richly decorated with paint, contained not only the mummified remains of the dead but also amulets and various boxes. Only a single coffin that was recently discovered contained a piece of papyrus inside featuring writing in hieroglyphs.
Mummies, ancient treasures found in Egypt
The well-preserved text, which may contain lines from the Egyptian Book of the Dead, will be analyzed in the lab at the Egyptian Museum in Cairo, according to Mostafa Waziri, the Secretary General of the Supreme Council of Antiquities.
“In one of the wooden sarcophagi, we found, for the first time, a complete and sealed papyrus,” Waziri stated of the discovery.
An ancient Egyptian instrument, called a sistrum, and objects used in rituals dedicated to the goddess Isis were found by the archaeologists.
A number of cosmetics, including containers for kohl, which was used to line the eyes, and jewelry, such as bracelets and earrings, were also found at the ancient site.
The Supreme Council of Antiquities unveiled the discovery of the largest cache of 150 bronze statues, dating back to the Late Period, in the cemetery of the sacred animals in Saqqara. 250 intact coffins containing mummies, which will be on display at The Grand Egyptian Museum. pic.twitter.com/2Pw1jv0CAB
— Ministry of Tourism and Antiquities (@TourismandAntiq) May 30, 2022
Many of the finds discovered at the ancient Egyptian site, including the coffins containing mummies, will be put on display at the Grand Egyptian Museum, which is currently under construction. The Museum is set to open later this year and is located close to the Pyramids of Giza.
In 2020, archaeologists digging at Saqqara, the same Egyptian site where the recent discoveries were made, uncovered a hundred intricately painted, sealed sarcophagi at the site, some of which contain perfectly preserved mummies.
Additionally, forty statues of the funerary deity Ptah-Sokar, canopic jars, and countless gold masks and amulets were discovered at the site at the time.
The site served as the necropolis for Memphis, the capital of the Old Kingdom and a prominent city throughout Egypt’s ancient history for thousands of years. It is home to the Step Pyramid, which was built in the 27th century BC, and is the oldest pyramid in Egypt.
Considering the wealth of artifacts and coffins found at Saqqara, specialists predict that they will find even more ground-breaking remains at the site, including a workshop where bodies were prepared for mummification.