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Wednesday, November 9, 2016
New Discovery, Aswan: Causeway Discovered in Ancient Aswan Tomb
The Engraved Wall of The Causeway
The causeway leads to the tomb of the first Middle Kingdom provincial
governor of Elephantine Island.
Written By/ Nevine El-Aref.
During excavation work at Aswan's Qubbet El-Hawa necropolis, a British
mission from Birmingham University and the Egypt Exploration Society uncovered
a causeway leading to the tomb of Sarenput I, the first Middle Kingdom nomarch
(provincial governor) of Aswan's Elephantine Island.
Mahmoud Afifi, head of the Ancient Egyptian Antiquities Department at
the Ministry of Antiquities, told Ahram Online that the newly discovered
causeway is considered the longest ever found on the western bank of the Nile
in Aswan, stretching for 133 metres to connect the tomb of Sarenput I to the
Afifi explains that the causeway is decorated with engravings, the most
important of which are found on the eastern part of the ramp's northern wall
and depict a group of men pulling a bull and presenting it as an offering to
Sarenput I after his death.
Hani Abul Azm, head of the central administration of Upper Egypt, told
Ahram Online that the mission has also unearthed a collection of clay
containers from a pit within the causeway, which archaeologists believe are
canopic jars used in mummification.
The Causeway Upon Discovery
Abul Azm said the containers will be studied, along with the organic
materials found inside, in an attempt to better understand the mummification
The mission's field director Martin Yumath says he is very enthusiastic
about the discovery, describing it as "a wonderful success that could
change the original features of Qubbet El-Hawa area."
Yumath asserted that the mission will start a comprehensive study on the
ramp in order to reveal more of its secrets, which may open up the opportunity
to comprehensively explore the Qubbet El-Hawa area, which houses a collection
of tombs of high officials from the Old Kingdom and nomarchs from the Middle
Sarenput I ruled Elephantine during the reign of King Senusert I of the
12th dynasty. He held several other titles such as the overseer of the priests
of Satet and the overseer of foreign lands, among other positions. He was also
the king's personal trading agent for goods from Nubia. His tomb is composed of
three rooms connected by hallways.
The first two chambers hold colonnades, while the innermost chamber has
a niche that once housed a statue of the owner. The outer reliefs depict
Sarenput with some of his relatives and his dogs, while the surviving inner
paintings depict a scene of the owner with the god Khnum.