Egyptian archaeologists found 250 stone graves in Suhaj or Sohag, a city on the west bank of the Nile, Egypt. According to the Egyptian Ministry of Antiquities on Tuesday (11/5/2021), the hundreds of tombs are estimated to be 4,200 years old.
"We found a cemetery with several burial wells, as well as a cemetery with a sloping corridor ending with a burial chamber," the ministry said in a statement. "The age of the graves ranges from the end of the Old Kingdom to the end of the Ptolemaic period," he added.
Mohamed Abdel-Badie, a senior antiquities official who led the excavations, said pottery and votive items had also been found. The objects were thought to be for the gods of ancient Egypt. "Small alabaster vessels, animal and human bones, and limestone remain that could have been burial items dating to the Sixth Dynasty were also found," Abdel-Badie said.
"Small alabaster vessels, animal and human bones and limestone remain that could have been burial plates ... dating to the Sixth Dynasty were also found," Abdel-Badie said.
Cairo has announced several new archaeological discoveries in recent months, hoping to revive a vital tourism sector hit by the 2011 uprising.
The team of archaeologists later also found the remains of round metal mirrors, human and animal bones, small alabaster pots, fragments of amphorae dating to the Late Egyptian Period (c. 664 to 332 BC), and pieces of limestone burial plates dating to the Sixth Dynasty. (circa 2345 to 2181 BC).
Badiaa and his colleagues hope to find more stone graves at the site when excavation efforts resume. Based on the statement, they have documented more than 300 tombs in the area, which is located in the city center near the ancient cities of Aswan and Abido.
The discoveries made at the site could pave the way for future discoveries at archaeological sites that are often overlooked, Badiaa told Al-Monitor.
"Egypt has many ancient sites, but the light has to be lit in other unknown areas," Badia said.
"[Excavations] should not be limited to well-known archaeological areas like Saqqara or Luxor," he stressed.