Catacombs, mummies, funerary masks and sculptures are discovered in Alexandria, Egypt

The ancient Egyptians were mummified and buried with countless gold artifacts, in addition to wearing pieces that represented deities.

At the Taposiris Magna archaeological site in Alexandria, Egypt, a team of archaeologists from the University of Santo Domingo has announced the discovery of 16 burials in rock-cut tombs, or burial shafts. They were inside a necropolis that had been discovered in another research project at the site.

In the graves, mummies with peculiar decorations were identified . Some of the mummified bodies had a carton wrapper depicting the god Osiris. They were also covered with traces of gold.

In particular, one of the mummies wore an Atef Crown, which is a representation of Osiris, with golden horns. She also had a portrait of a snake on her forehead, carried a Usekh necklace, usually worn by the elite of Ancient Egypt, and wore a golden breastplate.

The researchers also discovered eight sculptures made of marble that featured numerous sculpted details, featuring portraits of people.

According to experts, the artifacts were intended to represent the facial features of individuals, dating from the Greco-Roman period.

The mission, headed by lawyer and archaeologist Kathleen Martinez, features experts from the University of Santo Domingo.

The type of rock-cut tombs discovered were popular in Egypt’s Greco-Roman era. A number of mummies were discovered in the shafts, although they are reportedly in a poor state of preservation.

Khaled Abo El Hamd, Director General of the antiquities authority in Alexandria, said that during this season the mission made a number of archaeological discoveries. The most important of these were: a funeral mask for a woman; eight golden flakes representing the leaves of a golden wreath; and eight masks of marble dating back to the Greek and Roman eras.

Abo El Hamd noted that the masks, which depict the facial features of their owners, show high craftsmanship in sculpture.

In the last 10 years, the mission has found several important archaeological finds that have changed our perception of the Temple of Taposiris Magna.

A number of coins bearing the name and image of Queen Cleopatra VII were found inside the temple walls, in addition to many parts of statues. The temple grounds were found adorned in the past to reveal the temple foundation panels, which prove that it was built by King Ptolemy IV.

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