EGYPT: Egypt has announced the discovery of a 4,400 year old tomb. And this tomb belonging to a senior official from the fifth dynasty of the pharaohs. This was found in the pyramid complex of Saqqara south of the capital Cairo, authorities said Saturday. Mostafa Waziri, secretary-general of the Supreme Council of Antiquities, described the find as 'one of a kind in the last decades'. Announcing the discovery was Antiquities Minister Khaled al-Anani, who said the tomb was “exceptionally well preserved” and many statues of different sizes and colours.
The tomb dates from the rule of Neferirkare Kakai, the third king of the Fifth Dynasty of the Old Kingdom. Archaeologists will start excavating the tomb on 16 December, and expect more discoveries to follow - including the owner's sarcophagus.
The tomb belongs to “Wahtye”, a high priest who served during the fifth dynasty reign of King Neferirkare, the antiquities ministry said.His tomb is decorated with scenes showing the royal priest alongside his mother, wife and other members of his family, the ministry said in a statement.It also contains more than a dozen niches and 24 colourful statues of the cleric and members of his family. Experts also say the tomb is also decorated in the name of Wahtye’s mother, “Merit Meen”, while his wife’s name was “Weret-Ptah”.Three of those tombs contained mummified cats and scarabs.The Saqqara necropolis south of Cairo is home to the famous Djoser pyramid, a more than 4,600-year-old monument which dominates the site and the country’s first.
Several other discoveries have been made this year at Saqqara. They include a 3,300-year-old tomb of a high general, a burial ground containing a 2,500-year-old mummy wearing a silver face mask gilded with gold and a tomb complex that has over 100 cat statues.