June 1, 2022
Today’s discovery confirms that the temple wasn’t exclusively for cats, but for other Egyptian deities too.Dr. Mohamed Al Saidi, director of an ongoing Egyptian mission that recently discovered 250 still-sealed sarcophagi (painted coffins) from the “Cemetery of Sacred Animals.”
- Why It Matters: The latest discoveries from the “Cemetery of Sacred Animals” are up to 2,500 years old (about 500 B.C.). The Egyptian government hopes the findings will boost the country’s tourism industry, which began declining during the 2011 “Arab Spring” (a period of social unrest, including anti-government protests) and has been further impacted by the pandemic and war in Ukraine.
- The discoveries are part of an ongoing mission outside of Cairo, Egypt. The recent findings are the fifth round of artifacts revealed by on-site archeologists since 2018, and more discoveries are expected in coming years.
- “In one of the wooden sarcophagi, we found, for the first time, a complete and sealed papyrus,” said Mostafa Waziri, the secretary general of Egypt’s Supreme Council of Antiquities. The excavation also included “150 bronze statues of Egyptian deities and instruments used for rituals.”
- For photos of the recent discoveries, click here (Axios).
- Other Egyptian artifact news: The former president of the Louvre Museum, Jean-Luc Martinez, was recently charged for allegedly “concealing the origin of criminally obtained works by false endorsement” of items obtained from the Middle East during the Arab Spring protests. French investigators suspect that hundreds of artifacts were pillaged during the protests and were given fraudulent certificates of origin before being sold to galleries and museums. Martinez, who was in charge of the Louvre from 2013-2021, “denies any wrongdoing” and is undergoing investigation. Click here for more (The Guardian).
Egypt unearths trove of artifacts, 250 mummies in ancient necropolis (Washington Post)
by Jenna Lee,