Archaeology & History
Rare 'Book of the Dead' scroll found at ancient Egyptian cemetery
By T.K. Randall
November 3, 2023 · 2 comments
One of the mummies found at the site. Image Credit: Egyptian Ministry of Tourism and Antiquities
Archaeologists have made a number of signifcant discoveries at a cemetery dating back 3,500 years.
Situated at the necropolis of Tuna al-Gebel in central Egypt, the cemetery, which was recently discovered during extensive excavation work, was found to contain several mummies, coptic jars, amulets, figurines and sarcophagi, all dating back to the New Kingdom around 3,500 years ago.
The most significant find, however, was a well-preserved 'Book of the Dead' papyrus scroll measuring around 49ft in length - something rarely found because scrolls like these deteriorate easily.
The 'Book of the Dead' is the name given to a series of texts containing spells designed to assist the dead in their journey through the underworld and into the afterlife.
While there are nearly 200 chapters contained within the complete book, nobody has ever found a papyrus containing all of them. Instead, scrolls found at burial sites typically contain a selection of chapters that are perhaps most relevant to whoever is buried there.
No specific details about the contents of the newly discovered scroll have been released, so it remains unclear which chapters of the book are contained within it.
The mummies found at the cemetery include the daughter of Djehuty (the high priest of the god Amun) as well as a singer who was thought to have worked at the temple of Amun.
More details surrounding the disoveries at the site are expected to be released in the near future.
Source: Business Insider
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