Wednesday, July 26, 2017
One suspect has been arrested, while two others are still being sought by police. Written By/ Nevine El-Aref
Mahrous Saeed, Director General of Nubian Antiquities, said that the attempted theft occurred on Sunday afternoon, when the museum was closed for lunch.
Security cameras detected three people moving around inside the museum and attempting to remove a statue depicting goddess Isis breast-feeding her son Horus.
The incident was reported to the Tourism and Antiquities Police, who succeeded in securing the statue and identifying those responsible.
One of the suspects was arrested, but the other two escaped and are being sought by police.
Saeed said that two of the suspects were employees in the museum's administration department, while the identity of the third person is not known.
The Nubian Museum was inaugurated in 1997 to relate the history of Nubia, the area that stretches from Aswan in the north through to Sudan in the south.
The museum was designed as an innovative interpretation of traditional Nubian architecture, winning an Aga Khan Award for Architecture in 2001.
The museum's content is organized along chronological lines, illustrating the development of the region from pre-history up to the present through art and artifacts.
In addition, the museum boasts life-size models showing traditional Nubian customs, as well as a permanent exhibit documenting international efforts, carried out during the construction of the Aswan Dam, to rescue the ancient monuments of Nubia from the waters of Lake Nasser.
Wednesday, June 21, 2017
A 3,400-year-old tomb holding the remains of more than a dozen possibly mummified people has been discovered on Sai Island, along the Nile River in northern Sudan.
Archaeologists discovered the tomb in 2015, though it wasn't until 2017 that a team with the Across Borders archaeological research project fully excavated the site.
The island is part of an ancient land known as Nubia that Egypt controlled 3,400 years ago. The Egyptians built settlements and fortifications throughout Nubia, including on Sai Island, which had a settlement and a gold mine.
The tomb, which contains multiple chambers, appears to hold the remains of Egyptians who lived in or near that settlement and worked in gold production.
The artifacts found in the tomb include scarabs (a type of amulet widely used in Egypt), ceramic vessels, a gold ring, the remains of gold funerary masks worn by the deceased and a small stone sculpture known as a shabti.
The ancient Egyptians believed that shabtis could do the work of the deceased for them in the afterlife. Some of the artifacts bore Egyptian hieroglyphic inscriptions that revealed the tomb was originally created for a man named Khnummose, who was a "master gold worker."
The remains of Khnummose (which may have been mummified) were found next to those of a woman who may have been his wife. Some of the other people found in tomb may have been relatives of Khnummose, the researchers said, adding that they planned to conduct DNA analyses of the remains.
"We will try to extract ancient DNA from the [bones] of the bodies in question," said Julia Budka, professor for Egyptian Archaeology and Art History at the Ludwig-Maximilians-University of Munich. "If the [ancient] DNA is preserved, this will help us a lot.
Otherwise, it all remains tentative," said Budka, who noted that the samples are already at the Department for Archaeogenetics at the Max Planck Institute for the Science of Human History in Jena, Germany.
The archaeologists said they aren't sure how many of the bodies were mummified.
"The state of preservation is very difficult here," Budka said. "I am waiting for the report of my physical anthropologists. For now, the position and also traces of bitumen speak for some kind of mummification for all persons in Tomb 26 who were placed in wooden coffins."
Bitumen is a type of petroleum that the ancient Egyptians sometimes used in mummification.
Many of the coffins are also poorly preserved, and it's uncertain exactly how many of the people were buried in coffins, Budka said.
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