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Dozens of cat mummies found in 6,000-year-old tombs in Egypt

Dozens of cat mummies and an extraordinary choice of mummified scarab beetles were found out in seven sarcophagi, some relationship again greater than 6,000 years, at a web site at the fringe of the pyramid advanced in Saqqara, south of Cairo.

Antiquities Minister Khaled el-Enany mentioned the invention was once made through an Egyptian archaeological project right through excavation paintings began in April.

3 of the tombs have been used for cats, he mentioned, whilst certainly one of 4 different sarcophagi found out on the web site was once unopened.

mummified cats



An Egyptian archaeologist cleans mummified cats on the web site south of Cairo. Historical Egyptians worshipped cats as gods. : Khaled Desouki/AFP/Getty Pictures

The tomb dates from the 5th Dynasty of the Previous Kingdom and is peculiar since the facade and door are intact, which means its contents might nonetheless be untouched, mentioned Mohamed Youssef, director of the Saqqara house. He mentioned professionals plan to discover it within the coming weeks.

Mostafa Waziri, head of Egypt’s Very best Council of Antiquities, mentioned the project had additionally unearthed the primary mummies of scarabs to be discovered within the house.

Two such mummies have been discovered within an oblong limestone sarcophagus with a vaulted lid embellished with 3 scarabs painted in black, he mentioned.

Some other choice of scarab mummies was once discovered within a smaller sarcophagus.

mummified scarab beetles



Mummified scarabs on show in a tumbler case present in a newly found out tomb, at an historic necropolis close to Egypt’s famed pyramids in Saqqara, Giza, Egypt. : Nariman El-Mofty/AP

“The [mummified] scarab is one thing in point of fact distinctive. It’s one thing in point of fact slightly uncommon,” Waziri mentioned.

“A few days in the past, after we found out the ones coffins, they have been sealed coffins with drawings of scarabs. I by no means heard about them sooner than.”

A number of the dozens of cat mummies unearthed have been 100 picket, gilded statues of cats and one in bronze devoted to the cat goddess Bastet.

Cats held a distinct position in historic Egypt and have been mummified as spiritual choices.

A choice of picket, gilded statues of a lion, a cow and a falcon was once additionally unearthed on the Saqqara web site.

The antiquities division additionally discovered painted picket cobra and crocodile sarcophagi, a choice of gilded statues depicting animal options, in addition to gadgets together with amulets, canopic jars, writing equipment and papyri baskets.

Agence France-Presse and Reuters

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