Burials and bathhouses: a round-up of some of the latest Ancient Egyptian discoveries

Assasif burials

A Spanish team has announced the discovery of the remains of 60 mummies, buried in two tombs close to the tomb of the New Kingdom vizier Amenhotep-Huy in el-Assasif (West Bank of Luxor). The burials were of senior officials and priests who chose to be interred close to the vizier. He had served Amenhotep III and opposed the religious reforms of Akhenaten. The burial site of the vizier became a sacred place. The tombs each consist of two chambers, which were connected directly to the vizier’s tomb.

Other discoveries

•An ancient Roman bathhouse with a hypocaust has been found at the Temple of Khnum at Esna.

The newly discovered Roman bathhouse at Esna.

•A Polish team has discovered nine crocodile heads inside two tombs belonging to Eleventh Dynasty nobles at Deir el-Bahri; the finds are unusual in that only the heads were found, wrapped in linen rather than having been mummified, and buried in human tombs rather than animal catacombs.

•A new visitor centre has been opened at San al-Hagar (Tanis) following several years of restoration and the reconstruction of some of the monumental blocks and statues (including two obelisks, two columns, and two colossal statues of Ramesses II).

left The new visitor centre at San el-Hagar (Tanis). right The newly discovered Roman bathhouse at Esna.
The new visitor centre at San el-Hagar (Tanis).

•New research suggests that ancient Egyptian branding irons once thought to mark cattle were used to brand slaves and prisoners.

•Fragments of glazed ceramics depicting the goddess Hathor have been discovered at an Iron Age archaeological site in Salamanca in Spain; the team believe that either local people adopted aspects of eastern Mediterranean cultures or the artefact was taken there by Phoenician traders.

All images: copyright of the Ministry for Tourism and Antiquities