Famed Egyptian archaeologist reveals details of ancient city

Marco Green
April 11, 2021

Egypt announced on Thursday the discovery of what it termed the "Lost Golden City" in the southern province of Luxor, with one USA -based egyptologist describing the find as the biggest archaeological discovery since Tutankhamun's tomb almost a century ago.

A 3,000-year-old lost city from Egypt's "golden era" has recently been unearthed.

But the team soon uncovered much more extensive mud-brick structures, according to the Egyptian archaeologist overseeing the dig, Zahi Hawass.

When Tutankhamun became king, he restored the "Ancient Egyptian religion" - a complex polytheistic system that had been prevalent before Akhenaten established Atenism.

They unearthed the well-preserved city that had nearly complete walls and rooms filled with tools of daily life along with rings, scarabs, coloured pottery vessels and mud bricks bearing seals of Amenhotep's cartouche.

The excavation area is sandwiched between Rameses III's temple at Medinet Habu and Amenhotep III's temple at Memnon.

"This is really a large city that was lost".

It has been described as the "lost golden city of Luxor".

A picture taken on April 10, 2021, shows a view of a 3000 year old city, dubbed The Rise of Aten, dating to the reign of Amenhotep III, uncovered by the Egyptian mission near Luxor.

"The discovery of the Lost City not only will give us a rare glimpse into the life of the ancient Egyptians at the time where the empire was at [its] wealthiest, but will help us shed light on one of history's greatest [mysteries]: Why did Akhenaten and [Queen] Nefertiti decide to move to Amarna?". Evidence of several industries, including spinning and weaving, metal manufacture and glass-making, was also found. For example, they found two burial spots - of a cow and a bull - inside the rooms, the goal of which is not immediately clear.

"There's no indication that I am aware of that this town section had been found before, although clearly it represents a new part of an enormous royal city, that we can appreciate far more now", she said.

One of the most recent finds is a vessel containing two gallons of dried or boiled meat (about 10 kg); it has a valuable inscription: Year 37, dressed meat for the third Heb Sed festival from the slaughterhouse of the stockyard of Kha, made by the butcher luwy.

"We found one portion of the city only", Hawass told AFP today. Akhenaten, who is known for mandating that his people worship just one deity - the sun god Aten - called for this move. It's also a mystery whether the city was repopulated when King Tut returned to Thebes and reopened it as a religious center, according to the statement.

On Thursday, the Egyptian Ministry of Tourism and Antiquities said that an expedition led by Hawass, the former minister for antiquities affairs, had discovered a city on the west bank of the Nile near Luxor.

"Only further excavations of the area will reveal what truly happened 3500 years ago", the statement explains.

The archaeology team began excavating in September 2020, and have now found entire neighborhoods.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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