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A sarcophagus of a high-ranking statesman during Ramses era uncovered

The Egyptian archaeological mission of the Faculty of Archeology, Cairo University, headed by Ola al-Egezy, succeeded in excavating a pink granite sarcophagus of Ptah-em-uya, a senior statesman, who held important administrative titles during the reign of King Ramses II.

This came during the excavations that the mission is conducting in the Saqqara archeological area, south of the ascending corridor of the pyramid of King Unas during its 2021-2022 work season.

The Secretary-General of the Supreme Council of Antiquities, Mostafa Waziri, explained that the mission succeeded in the previous excavation season in excavating the private tomb of Ptah-em-uya, and with the continuation of excavations during the current season, the mission was able to find a pink granite coffin inside the tomb.

The coffin is covered with texts that mention the name of its owner Ptah-em-uya and scenes representing the sons of the Horus accompanied by calls to protect the deceased.

The coffin has a cover in the form of a human depiction for the face of the deceased, adorned with a wig chin.

Waziri said that the importance of this discovery comes from the important positions held by the owner of the sarcophagus, which are related to the management of the funerary temple of King Ramses II in Thebes.

Waziri noted that among the titles are the royal secretary, chief overseer of cattle, and head of the treasury of the Ramasseum, Rameses’ funerary temple in the Theban necropolis in Luxor city.

For her part, Egezy said that the sarcophagus was found in the main burial chamber inside the tomb, and preliminary studies proved that there was a crack in the lid of the coffin, which indicates that the tomb had been opened in later eras of burial, and exposed to theft, as the coffin was left with only traces of the resin of the mummification product.

The broken part of the lid was found in the corner of the chamber near the coffin, and the mission was able to restore it and return it to its original position.

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