Archaeologists working near Cairo have uncovered hundreds of ancient Egyptian coffins and bronze statues of deities.

The discovery in a Saqqara cemetery contained statues of the gods Anubis, Amun, Min, Osiris, Isis, Nefertum, Bastet and Hathor, along with a headless statue of the architect Imhotep, who built the Saqqara pyramid, the ministry said on Monday. of Tourism and Antiquities of Egypt.

The 250 coffins, 150 bronze statues and other objects date from the late period, around 500 B.C., the ministry said.

They were accompanied by a musical instrument known as a sistrum and a collection of bronze vessels used in ritual worship of the goddess Isis.

Painted wooden coffins were found intact in burial pits and contained mummies, amulets, and wooden boxes. Wooden statues of Nephthys and Isis from an earlier time were also found, both with golden faces.

One of the coffins contained a well-preserved papyrus written in hieroglyphs, perhaps verses from the Book of the Dead, and it was sent to the Egyptian Museum’s laboratory in Cairo for study, said Mostafa Waziri, Secretary General of the Supreme Council of Antiquities.

A collection of cosmetics, including kohl containers, as well as bracelets and earrings, have been found.

The coffins will be moved for display at the Grand Egyptian Museum being built near the Great Pyramids of Giza and due to open later this year.

Saqqara, south of the Giza pyramids, has provided a steady stream of archaeological discoveries in recent years. The mission has been excavating in the area since 2018.

Conforms to The Trust Project criteria