The 59 sarcophagi have been found in three pits in the Saqqara necropolis, near the famous pyramid of King Djoser
The Egyptian government announced on Saturday the discovery of a large collection of intact and well-preserved coffins dating back 2,600 years in a major necropolis near Cairo.
The Minister of Tourism and Antiquities, Khaled al-Anany, has reported that the 59 sarcophagi have been found in three pits in the Saqqara necropolis, near the famous pyramid of King Djoser. The uncovered coffins are in very good condition and even retain their original colors, they assured.
An indescribable feeling every time we witness a new archaeological discovery, especially when it is an 11-meter-deep shaft encompassing a number of sealed pharaonic human coffins. A wonderful feeling that we are revealing a new secret of our great civilization… Stay tuned for the announcement of a new discovery in Saqqara! A big thank you to all my colleagues in the ministry for their efforts and dedication
“I witnessed the opening of one of the coffins, and it seems as if the body had been mummified yesterday,” said the curator this Saturday, adding that the process has not yet finished because there are still layers of sarcophagi to unearth.
What the coffins contain
These coffins are originally believed to house the mortal remains of a group of priests and high officials from the Late Period of ancient Egypt. Dozens of statuettes have also been unearthed, including a bronze one for the god Nefertum, and amulets.
The collection will be exhibited in the Grand Egyptian Museum, which will be built next to the pyramids of Giza, along with three other 3,500-year-old wooden coffins unearthed from the Al Asasif necropolis in Luxor city, according to the minister.