Spanish team in Egypt finds 3,600-year-old mummy

Feb 13, 2014 by Mariam Rizk
This photo released on Thursday, Feb. 13, 2014 by Egypt's Supreme Council of Antiquities, shows Egyptian men digging up a preserved wooden sarcophagus that dates back to 1600 BC, when the Pharaonic 17th Dynasty reigned, in the ancient city of Luxor, Egypt. Egypt's Antiquities Minister says Spanish archeologists have unearthed a 3,600-year-old mummy in the ancient city of Luxor. (AP Photo/Egypt's Supreme Council Of Antiquities)

Spanish archeologists have unearthed a 3,600-year-old mummy in the ancient city of Luxor, Egypt's Antiquities Minister said Thursday. Prosecutors accused nine people including three Germans of smuggling stone samples from pyramids.

In a statement, Mohammed Ibrahim said the rare find in a preserved wooden sarcophagus dates back to 1600 BC, when the Pharaonic 17th Dynasty reigned.

He said the mummy appears to belong to a high official. The sarcophagus is engraved with hieroglyphs and decorated with inscriptions of birds' feathers.

The exact identity of the well-preserved mummy will now be studied, Ibrahim said, adding that it was discovered by a Spanish mission in collaboration with the Egyptian antiquities ministry.

Antiquities department head Ali Al-Asfar said the two-meter sarcophagus still bears its original coloring and writings.

Meanwhile, Egypt's top prosecutor referred three Germans to criminal court on charges of smuggling and damaging antiquities and six Egyptians for acting as their accessories.

Hisham Barakat said authorities issued arrest warrants for the alleged German thieves, who fled to their country after the incident. He said authorities would communicate with Germany to restore the pieces they say were taken last April under the pretext of use for research.

The Egyptian defendants are already in detention.

This photo released on Thursday, Feb. 13, 2014 by Egypt's Supreme Council of Antiquities, shows a preserved wooden sarcophagus that dates back to 1600 BC, when the Pharaonic 17th Dynasty reigned, in Egypt. Egypt's Antiquities Minister says Spanish archeologists have unearthed a 3,600-year-old mummy in the ancient city of Luxor. (AP Photo/Egypt's Supreme Council Of Antiquities)

Barakat says the Germans, along with their Egyptian guides, entered the famed pyramids of Giza with permits to visit but not excavate, and left with samples of stone from the ramparts of two tombs and the burial room of King Khufu.

Egyptian archaeologist Monica Hanna says the German researchers wanted to use the samples prove their hypothesis in a documentary they later filmed, which says that the pyramids were built by a people that pre-dates the ancient Egyptians.

The online documentary, removed in the wake of the controversy, showed one researcher inside the inner chambers of the Khufu pyramid, taking samples from the king's cartouche.

This photo released on Thursday, Feb. 13, 2014 by Egypt's Supreme Council of Antiquities, shows a preserved wooden sarcophagus that dates back to 1600 BC, when the Pharaonic 17th Dynasty reigned, in Egypt. Egypt's Antiquities Minister says Spanish archeologists have unearthed a 3,600-year-old mummy in the ancient city of Luxor. (AP Photo/Egypt's Supreme Council Of Antiquities)

Egypt has experienced a security vacuum since its 2011 uprising. Thousands of artifacts have been stolen.

Explore further: Five pharaonic statue heads found in Egypt

4.9 /5 (11 votes)
add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Five pharaonic statue heads found in Egypt

Nov 17, 2013

A team of Egyptian and French archaeologists have found five heads of royal statues from the pharaonic era, officials from the antiquities ministry said on Saturday.

57 ancient tombs with mummies unearthed in Egypt

May 23, 2010

(AP) -- Archeologists have unearthed 57 ancient Egyptian tombs, most of which hold an ornately painted wooden sarcophagus with a mummy inside, Egypt's Supreme Council of Antiquities said Sunday.

Tomb of ancient Egyptian beer brewer unearthed

Jan 03, 2014

(AP)—Egypt's minister of antiquities says Japanese archeologists have unearthed the tomb of an ancient beer brewer in the city of Luxor that is more than 3,000 years old.

Recommended for you

US state reaches deal to keep dinosaur mummy

Oct 21, 2014

North Dakota reached a $3 million deal to keep a rare fossil of a duckbilled dinosaur on display at the state's heritage center, where it will serve as a cornerstone for the facility's $51 million expansion, officials said ...

Jerusalem stone may answer Jewish revolt questions

Oct 21, 2014

Israeli archaeologists said Tuesday they have discovered a large stone with Latin engravings that lends credence to the theory that the reason Jews revolted against Roman rule nearly 2,000 ago was because ...

Kung fu stegosaur

Oct 21, 2014

Stegosaurs might be portrayed as lumbering plant eaters, but they were lethal fighters when necessary, according to paleontologists who have uncovered new evidence of a casualty of stegosaurian combat. The ...

User comments : 0