14 ancient tombs discovered at Saqqara

Egypt discovers 14 ancient coffins at Saqqara

Archaeologists uncover 27 ancient wooden coffins buried for 2,500 years in Egypt

She said 13 coffins were found earlier this month in a newly discovered, 11 meter-deep (36 feet) well, and that 14 more were found last week in another well.

One of the 14 coffins discovered in a burial shaft at the desert necropolis of Saqqara, south of Cairo.

The wooden coffins are said to be well-preserved and some have even retained their original colours, despite being buried underground for millennia.

Footage shared by the ministry showed colorful sarcophagi decorated with ancient Egyptian hieroglyphics, as well as other artifacts the ministry said were found in the two wells.

In March, Egypt reopened at the Saqqara site the Djoser's Step Pyramid, the first pyramid ever built, after a 14-year restoration costing almost $6.6 million.

The total number of coffins and artefacts buried in this site are as yet unknown according to Waziri, but El-Enany said that it "includes the largest number of coffins in one burial since the discovery of the Al-Asasif cachette".

Egypt has sought to promote archaeological discoveries across the country in a bid to revive tourism, which took a hit from restrictions on travel due to the novel coronavirus pandemic.

El-Arif said further excavations were underway in the necropolis, and more coffins were expected to be found. It was also at this same burial site in April 2020 that archaeologists unearthed a tomb filled with the remains of hundreds of mummified sacred animals, including a bird cemetery and wrapped up crocodiles, cats and snakes that had all been laid to rest to serve their masters on their way to the afterlife.

The vast Saqqara necropolis is located around 16km south of the famed Giza pyramids.

Now on the edge of a growing Cairo, the Great Pyramids, Egypt's top tourist destination, are the sole survivor of the seven wonders of the ancient world and the plateau is a Unesco World Heritage site.

In October 2019, archaeologists unearthed 30 ancient wooden coffins with inscriptions and paintings in the southern city of Luxor.

In July, Egypt restarted worldwide flights and reopened major tourist attractions including the Great Pyramids of Giza after months of closure due to the coronavirus pandemic.

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