4,300-year-old Egyptian mummy wrapped in gold is thought to be the oldest EVER: Remains of a man are found at the bottom of a 50-foot shaft near the Step Pyramids
- The remains were found in a limestone sarcophagus with the name ‘Hekashepes’
- Not only is this possibly the oldest mummy it is also the most complete found
- The discovery follows the find of a mummified ancient Egyptian teenage boy
Archaeologists have uncovered a 4,300-year-old mummy wrapped entirely in gold near the Step Pyramids – and it could be the oldest ever found.
The man, named ‘Hekashepes,’ was found inside a limestone sarcophagus at the bottom of a 50-foot-deep shaft.
The excavation team also uncovered a trove of beautiful life-size statues carved to resemble servants, men, women and families.
The discoveries are part of a group of fifth and sixth-dynasty tombs found 19 miles south of Cairo, which officials hope will revive tourism in the region.
The 4,300-year-old mummy was found laced with gold. Archeologists believe it si the oldest found yet, along with the most complete
Archaeologists found several tombs in Egypt. Pictured is the door that stood in front of the tomb at the bottom of the shaft
‘Unfortunately, the expedition did not find any inscriptions that might identify the owners of these statues,’ Egyptologist Zahi Hawas, who led the dig, pointed out.
The Saqqara site is part of a sprawling necropolis at Egypt’s ancient capital of Memphis that includes the famed Giza Pyramids and smaller pyramids at Abu Sir, Dahshur and Abu Ruwaysh.
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The ruins of Memphis were designated a UNESCO World Heritage site in the 1970s.
Two shafts were discovered at the site, one with the remains of Hekashepes and the other 30 feet deep, leading to three other tombs and numerous statues.
‘The most important tomb belongs to Khnumdjedef, an inspector of the officials, a supervisor of the nobles, and a priest in the pyramid complex of Unas, the last king of the fifth dynasty,’ Hawass said.
‘The tomb is decorated with scenes of daily life.’
Another tomb belonged to Meri, ‘keeper of the secrets and assistant to the great leader of the palace.’
Meri was a highly trusted man of an ancient king and oversaw the Pharaoh’s archive documents.
He knew the secrets of making letters and words, which were associated with magic and cosmic knowledge in an illiterate Egyptian society.
The second shaft also contained a group of beautiful wooden statues.
In addition, three statues of a person named Fetek were found alongside an offering table and a stone sarcophagus containing his mummy.
The excavation team also found many amulets, stone vessels, tools for daily life, and statues of Ptah-Sokar.
The discovery is part of a group of fifth and sixth-dynasty tombs found 19 miles south of Cairo near the Step Pyramids
Statues, still preserved, were found in a second shaft near the Step Pyramid
Along with the tomb, the team found numerous statues. One details a scene of a family
Archaeologists found pottery fragments inside the tombs and are working to piece the objects back together
Thursday’s unveiling comes amid a flurry of new discoveries announced by Egyptian authorities over the past week.
Near the southern city of Luxor, authorities said they found dozens of burial sites dating from 1800 BC to 1600 BC from the New Kingdom era.
Discovered nearby were the ruins of an ancient Roman city, it said.
In a separate announcement Tuesday, a group of scientists from Cairo University revealed previously unknown details about a mummified teenage boy dating to about 300 BC.
Other wooden statues were created to resemble servants
A stunning blue-colored artifact was found along with the vast burial
Teams worked through the day removing dirt and dust that blocked the entrance of the tomb
The walls inside the tomb were adorned with hieroglyphics. Officials hope the discovery will revive tourism in the region
Using CT scans, the scientists could shed new light on the boy’s high social status by affirming the intricate details of the amulets inserted within his mummified body and the type of burial he received.
Egypt often publicly touts its ancient discoveries to attract more tourists, a significant source of foreign currency for the cash-strapped North African country.
The sector suffered an extended downturn after the political turmoil and violence that followed a 2011 uprising.
Egypt’s tourist industry was also hit hard by the coronavirus pandemic and is currently suffering from the fallout from the war in Ukraine. Both Russia and Ukraine formerly comprised a large source of tourists visiting Egypt.
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