Archaeologists unearth 2,600 year-old chamber of mummies in Egypt

February 10th, 2009 - 2:32 pm ICT by ANI  

London, Feb 10 (ANI): In a rare find, archaeologists have discovered more than 20 mummies in a burial chamber in Egypt, dating back at least 2,600 years.

According to a report in BBC News, the mummies, 22 of which were found in niches along a wall, were in a tomb dating to 640 BC.

One wooden sarcophagus had not been opened since ancient times, though one official said ancient grave robbers had probably reached it first, according to a government statement.

A mummy was found in the only sarcophagus to have been opened so far, and archaeologists said they were expecting to find more mummies in the others.

Eight wooden and stone sarcophagi were also discovered during the excavations at the Saqqara site, said Zahi Hawass, Egypts chief archaeologist.

One limestone sarcophagus sealed with plaster is thought to be more than 4,000 years old.

Despite decades of excavations at the Saqqara necropolis south of Cairo, new finds are frequently made.

Correspondents say it is rare for such an intact burial site to be unearthed.

According to Hawass, some 70 percent of Egypts ancient monuments remain buried. (ANI)

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