Wednesday, March 30, 2016

The New Kingdom Necropolis of Gebel el Silsila

As you may have noticed there has been no news from the field since the beginning of our spring season back in January. Indeed there were enormous amounts of historical and archaeological details to share with you all, but time slipped away from us combined with the demanding work related to our latest announced discovery - the Necropolis.

Obviously, we have been aware of the Necropolis' existence before, and it is certainly not a discovery that anyone will simply "stumble on". Instead it was a well structured plan, which was based on the increasing environmental threat to some of the tombs (rising ground water with highly destructive salt contents), combined with a larger team on site that enabled us to get started. Please see below for our (very) preliminary report on the tombs.



3400 year old necropolis discovered at Gebel el Silsila
Dr. Maria Nilsson and John Ward

During the spring season 2016 the Swedish archaeological mission at Gebel el Silsila, led by Dr. Maria Nilsson and John Ward, in co-operation with the MSA, as well as Kom Ombo and Aswan Inspectorates under General Directors Abd el Menum and Nasr Salama respectively, discovered a remarkable New Kingdom necropolis with archaeological material dating from the early 18th dynasty and indications of re-use throughout the 19th dynasty. 

So far, over 40 tombs have been documented, including a small shrine, many of which have suffered from heavy erosion and extreme decay due to the rising water table and its high salt contents. As part of exploring the best method to save the monuments, the team undertook the careful cleaning of a small selection of tombs, work that will continue during forthcoming seasons.

The tombs consist of one to two undecorated rock-cut chambers, with one or more crypts cut into the bed rock floors, some preserved with remains of their original lid. The entrance of the tombs consist of a squared semi-dressed aperture that incorporate a vertical slot to either door jamb that would have facilitated a portcullis type of closure. The tombs are generally accessed via a series of steps that descend into a rough-cut squared chamber. Due to the lack of exterior or interior decoration, the identity of the persons buried remains unknown at this time.

The general archaeology and the stratigraphy of the tombs suggest that they were plundered already during antiquity, and again during the 19th century, as well as affected by the annual floods and driven sand, resulting in disturbed layers containing foremost pottery, bones, some beads and Nile silt, mixed with animal remains including crocodile scutes. Similar composition of archaeology was documented outside the tombs.

The ceramic material has been identified by the team's ceramic expert, Dr. Sarah Doherty, as traditional New Kingdom funerary ware, including storage vessels, beer jugs, and a selection of votive vessels. Preliminary analysis of the bones, made by Prof. Salima Ikram, suggests burials of men, women and children of all ages. Importantly, this indicates a more permanent habitation at Gebel el Silsila than previously thought.

Among the more important findings was a reversible seal ring, which depicts the cartouche of Pharaoh Thuthmosis III “Men-kheper-re” (comparable with seal UC61144: http://www.ucl.ac.uk/museums-static/digitalegypt/seals/archive/uc61144.jpg), and a scarab also bearing the pharaoh’s name. Associated text on the seal's reverse is currently studied by the team's Egyptologists. 

Fragments of detailed, painted mud-plaster indicate decorated coffins, which together with fragments of mummy wrapping and various beads and amulets suggest individuals of considerable status.

The shrine that was included among the discoveries is a small rock-cut sanctuary located on the banks of the Nile. It consists of two open chambers facing the river (west), which partially retain architectural features, including dressed walls and an inner doorway crowned with the winged solar disc. Further analysis is required of its archaeology due to annual flooding and extensive tumble since antiquity.

____________________________________________________________________________

The latest discovery as well as the season's work (with more news to come...!) was made possible by financial support from various foundations, including:

Magnus Bergvalls Stiftelse
National Geographic Grant
Enboms Stiftelse 
Helge Ax:son Johnsons stiftelse
Gerda Henkel Stiftung

and none of the work could have been completed without the most fabulous team ever! Thank you all for sharing the moments (hard work, blood, sweat and tears lol) and being part of this incredible journey that we are on!

Also, and with uppermost respect, thank you to the general inspectorates of Kom Ombo and Aswan, to General Directors Nasr Salama and Abd el Menum, and all the great inspectors of Kom Ombo and general inspectors of Gebel el Silsila, as each and everyone of you actively participate in changing history!

Maria and John 

Tomb 15 exterior

crypt with partially preserved lid inside Tomb 15

Tomb 14 interior, including entrance to second chamber

Doorway to Tomb 14, interior

Tomb 2, exterior

Seal: cartouche of Thutmosis III (Men-Kheper-Re)

Scarab with the cartouche of Thutmosis III

Portculis of Tomb 2, exterior

One of the crypts of  Tomb 14

Crocodile scutes

Bone fragment in mixed layer in Tomb 2

Steps inside Tomb 14

Shrine with winged solar disc and pillars on respective side

8 comments:

  1. Replies
    1. BETTERMENT FUNDING {bettermentfunding@gmail.com}
      Hi everyone, i am Alexis Ohanian am so glade coming back to this great forum to testify about the help i received from Chester Brian. I was in desperate need of a loan in other to be free from debt and financial bondage that was place on me by my ex husband. It was really bad that i have to seek for help from Friends,family and even my bank but on one could assist me because my credit score was really bad. So i was browsing with my computer and saw some testimonies from people Chester Brian assisted with a loan, then i decided to contact him on his email {bettermentfunding@gmail.com}, then i received a mail from them and i did all that was asked from me. To my greatest surprise they transferred to my account the loan i requested and now i am so happy clearing my debt and have also started a business with the remaining amount to take care of myself and family. If you need a loan do contact the best loan lender of all time Chester Brian on his email: {bettermentfunding@gmail.com}

      Delete
    2. Life indeed is GRACE, I'am Daan Sophia currently in California USA. I would like to share my experience with you guys on how I got a loan of $185,000.00 USD to clear my bank draft and start up a new business. It all started when i lost my home and belongings due to the bank draft I took to offset some bills and some personal needs. I became so desperate and began to seek for funds at all means. Luckily for me I heard a colleague of mine talking about this company, I got interested although i was scared of being scammed, I was compelled by my situation and had no choice than to seek advise from my friend regarding this very company and was given their contact number, getting intouch with them really made me skeptical due to my past experience with online lenders, little did i know this very Company "PROGRESSIVE LOAN INC. was a godsent to me and my family and the entire Internet World, this company has been of great help to me and some of my colleague and today am a proud owner of well organized business and responsibilities are well handled all thanks to Josef Lewis of (progresiveloan@yahoo.com).. So if really you are genuinely in need of a loan either to expand or start up your own business or in any form of financial difficulty, i advise you give Mr Josef Lewis of Progressive loan the opportunity of financial upliftment in your life Email: progresiveloan@yahoo.com OR Call/Text +1(603) 786-7565 and not fall victim of online scam in the name of getting a loan. thanks


      Delete
    3. CONTACT PROSPER LOAN AND BE FOREVER PROSPEROUS :- prosperloanplc@gmail.com or call +1(205) 224-8709 .

      Greetings to everyone, Life they say is full of deceit. No torture and pain can be compare to what i Theresa L. Bernard experience in the hands of scammers, I trusted the words of those fake loan lenders without verifying, I lost more than $12,500 in the quest of obtaining a loan i sold my car defaulted in my bills but i keep on falling victim my life has been piece of trash full of mess. My kids dropped out of school, My bank denied me credit because my credit score was down already. Until last week a very close friend told me that she got a loan from PROSPER LOAN PLC that i should also give it a try. Not having an option I contacted them with a heart full of sorrow and skepticism i shyly follow their procedures comply to their policy, I was waiting for the bad news like every other loan company i contacted gave me then i receive a credit alert that my bank account has been credited with $250,000 which i initially applied for instantly tears of joy roll out of my eyes because I never believe it will come through. Whenever you are in need of any kind of loan don't be a prey and contact the one true loan company via their information. Email: prosperloanplc@gmail.com or Call +1(205) 224-8709. And receive your financial breakthrough.

      Delete
  2. Are you suffering financially or do you need urgent cash to pay your bills? worry no more because, there is away you can earn money without stress.You can change your life in just 18hours. contact (MR Brown) for a blank [ATM SMART CARD]today and be among the lucky ones who are benefiting from this cards. This PROGRAMMED blank ATM SMART card is capable of hacking into any ATM machine,anywhere in the world. I got to know about this BLANK ATM CARD when I was searching for a loan lender online about a month ago..It has really changed my life for good and now I can take of my family. The least money I get in a day with this card is about $7000. Everyday i have enough money to take care of my family. Though is illegal, there is no risk of being caught , because it has been programmed in such a way that it is not traceable, and also it renders the CCTV useless when you are withdrawing money..For Details on how to get a card today, email the Hackers On : (Brownatmblankcard@gmail.com)Or Call +18327905722)

    ReplyDelete
  3. WHENEVER YOU OR YOUR LOVED ONES NEED A LOAN UPSTART LOAN IS THE BEST, TESTED AND TRUSTED. BEWARE OF RIPPERS ONLINE.( Email: upstartloan@yahoo.com or text/call +1(574) 301-1639 ).

    Good day, Out of my busy schedule just feel like to quickly share this because i know am going to save thousand of lives with this. A lot of persons will agree with me that fake loan lenders is no longer a news to us it has been trending for some months now and i was also victimized when i tried seeking for a loan for the invention of a new patent and invest on stock. After so many failed attempt to get a loan there was one company who proved themself to be different among the rest, They are trust worthy, straight forward, honest and reliable. I won't say much because as the saying goes "experience is the best teacher", I will candid advice anyone who need a loan of any amount to kindly contact this one and only true lenders UPSTART LOAN on their email address: ( upstartloan@yahoo.com ) Or you can as well text/call them on ( +1(574) 301-1639 ) . I remain my humble self Wesley Kurt Dwayne, I reside at Park Ave Richmond VA 23220. Say no more to be victim of scam enough is enough for the wise, Don't trust until you verified contact UPSTART LOAN now and be forever thankful for my advice.




    ReplyDelete
  4. INSTEAD OF GETTING A LOAN, CHECK OUT THE BLANK ATM CARD IN LESS THAN 24hours {blankatmhaker@gmail.com}

    Am Mark Oscar,I want to testify about Jack Robert blank ATM cards which can withdraw money from any ATM machines around the world. I was very poor before and have no hope then I saw so many testimony about how Jack Robert send them the ATM blank card and use it to collect money in any ATM machine and become rich. I also email him and he sent me the blank card. I have use it to get 70,000 dollars. withdraw the maximum of $5,000 daily. Jack Robert is giving out the card just to help the poor. Hack and take money directly from any ATM Machine Vault with the use of ATM Programmed Card which runs in automatic mode. email Him on how to get it now via: blankatmhaker@gmail.com or call/Text on +1(406) 350-4986

    ReplyDelete
  5. WHEN I HAD NO HOPE AFTER LOOSING ALL MY SAVINGS, CHESTER BRIAN LOANS HELPED ME {brianloancompany0@gmail.com}
    Hi everyone, i am Chloe Raymond am so glade coming back to this great forum to testify about the help i received from Chester Brian. I was in desperate need of a loan in other to be free from debt and financial bondage that was place on me by my ex husband. It was really bad that i have to seek for help from Friends,family and even my bank but on one could assist me because my credit score was really bad. So i was browsing with my computer and saw some testimonies from people Chester Brian assisted with a loan, then i decided to contact him on his email BRIANLOANCOMPANY0@GMAIL.COM, then i received a mail from them and i did all that was asked from me. To my greatest surprise they transferred to my account the loan i requested and now i am so happy clearing my debt and have also started a business with the remaining amount to take care of myself and family. If you need a loan do contact the best loan lender of all time Chester Brian on his email: BRIANLOANCOMPANY0@GMAIL.COM or Call/Text +1(803) 373-2162

    ReplyDelete