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Egypt Says Another Trove of Ancient Coffins Found in Saqqara

Egypt Says Another Trove of Ancient Coffins Found in Saqqara

Monday, 19 October, 2020 - 18:15
PM Mustafa Madbouly (C), Minister of Antiquities Khaled el-Anany and archeologists open a sarcophagus in a necropolis south of Cairo that is part of a recent discovery announced on Oct. 19, 2020, in Saqqara. (AP)

Egyptian archaeologists have unearthed another trove of ancient coffins in a vast necropolis south of Cairo, authorities said Monday.


The Tourism and Antiquities Ministry said in a statement that archaeologists found the collection of colorful, sealed sarcophagi buried more than 2,500 years ago at the Saqqara necropolis.


Mostafa Waziri, secretary general of the Supreme Council of Antiquities, said more than 80 coffins were found.


Archaeologists also found colorful, gilded wooden statues, the ministry said. Details of the new discovery will be announced in a news conference at the famed Step Pyramid of Djoser, it said.


Prime Minister Mustafa Madbouly and Tourism and Antiquities Minister Khalid el-Anany toured the area and inspected the new discovery, which came just over two weeks after the ministry revealed 59 sealed sarcophagi, with mummies inside most of them, in the same area of Saqqara.


The Saqqara site is part of the necropolis at Egypt’s ancient capital of Memphis that includes the famed Giza Pyramids, as well as smaller pyramids at Abu Sir, Dahshur and Abu Ruwaysh. The ruins of Memphis were designated a UNESCO World Heritage site in 1970s.


The plateau hosts at least 11 pyramids, including the Step Pyramid, along with hundreds of tombs of ancient officials and other sites that range from the 1st Dynasty (2920-2770 BC) to the Coptic period (395-642).


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