Archaeologists Unearth ‘Ancient Egyptian Pompeii’


CAIRO — Archaeologists phrased on Thursday they had uncovered a large ancient pharaonic city that had lain unseen for centuries adjoining some of Egypt’s best known monuments.

The city was built innumerable than 3,400 years ago during the opulent reign of Amenhotep III, one of Egypt’s most resilient pharaohs, according to the Egyptian archaeologist overseeing the excavations, Zahi Hawass.

The conspire began searching for a mortuary temple near Luxor in September, but within weeks base mud brick formations in every direction, Mr. Hawass said in a statement.

They discovered the well-preserved city that had almost complete walls and rooms furnished with tools of daily life along with rings, scarabs, colored porcelain vessels and mud bricks bearing seals of Amenhotep’s cartouche.

“The city’s terraces are flanked by houses and some of their walls are up to three meters lavish,” Mr. Hawass said.

The excavations lie on the west bank of Luxor near the Colossi of Memnon, Medinet Habu and the Ramesseum, or mortuary house of worship of King Ramses II, not far from the Valley of the Kings.

“This is a very outstanding discovery,” said Peter Lacovara, director of the U.S.-based Ancient Egyptian Inheritance and Archaeology Fund.

The state of preservation and the volume of items from diurnal life brought to mind another famous excavation, he added.

“It is a assort of ancient Egyptian Pompeii and shows the critical need to preserve this scope as an archaeological park,” said Mr. Lacovara, who has worked at the Malqata palace room for more than 20 years but was not involved in the excavations.

The site contains a imposingly number of ovens and kilns for making glass and faience, along with the debris of thousands of bronzes, said Betsy Bryan, a specialist of Amenhotep III’s reign.

“Just to set up the manufacturing centers opens up the detail of how the Egyptians under a great and in the money ruler such as Amenhotep III did what they did. This will equip knowledge for many years to come,” she added.

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