Archaeologists discover ancient 4,400-year-old tomb buried in Egypt

Archaeologists discover ancient 4,400-year-old tomb buried in Egypt

A well-preserved ancient tomb has been discovered south of the Egyptian capital of Cairo – and more exciting finds are expected in the coming months.

The tomb is decorated with hieroglyphs and statues and archaeologists are preparing to make more discoveries as they excavate the site.

It was found buried in a ridge "untouched and unlooted" at the ancient necropolis of Saqqara, according to Mostafa Waziri, secretary-general of the Supreme Council of Antiquities.

He described the latest find as "one of a kind in the last decades".

The tomb dates from the rule of Neferirkare Kakai, the third king of the Fifth Dynasty of the Old Kingdom.

One of the shafts was unsealed with nothing inside, however the other four were sealed and teams are expecting to make discoveries when they start uncovering the shafts on Sunday.

Waziri is particularly hopeful about one of the shafts, which he believes could lead to a coffin.

"I can imagine that all of the objects can be found in this area. This shaft should lead to a coffin or a sarcophagus of the owner of the tomb."
The tomb is 10 metres (33 ft) long, three metres (9.8 ft) wide and just under three metres high.

Waziri said the tomb is unique because of the statues and its near perfect condition.

He said: "The colour is almost intact even though the tomb is almost 4,400 years old."

The tomb lies in a buried ridge that has only partially been uncovered and more discoveries are expected to be made there
when archaeologists start more excavation work in January.

The Fifth Dynasty ruled Egypt from about 2,500 BC to 2,350 BC, not long after the great pyramid of Giza was built.

Saqqara served as the necropolis for Memphis, the capital of ancient Egypt for more than two millennia.

Ancient Egyptians mummified humans to preserve their bodies for the afterlife, while animal mummies were used as religious offerings.
Egypt has revealed over a dozen ancient discoveries this year.

The country hopes the finds will brighten its image abroad and revive interest among travelers who once flocked to its iconic pharaonic temples and pyramids but who fled after the 2011 political uprising.

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