50 mummies were recently discovered in Egypt’s Valley of the Kings. A variety of objects including wooden sarcophagi, death masks and canopic jars were also found with the mummies.
Archaeologists were able to read the names and inscriptions on many of these objects to determine who they belonged to and just who the mummies were. The mummified bodies appeared to belong to people of all ages, including newborn babies.
“The immense necropolis contains the remains of mummies that could have been members of the royal family, in particular the sons of the kings Tutmoses III and Tutmoses IV of the 18th dynasty,” which ruled from 1550-1292 BC, the antiquities ministry said.
The Valley of the Kings is also where King Tut’s tomb was found and is a popular tourist attraction. Archaeologists have found numerous other mummies at the location and are always searching for more.
They believe that many of the mummies that were recently discovered were princesses that scholars may not have even known existed.
A Swiss team from the University of Basel made the discover while working with the Egyptian government. The mummies will be studied and possibly displayed in the near future.
Some of the mummies and antiquities that were found with them could be sold to museums in other countries or traded for other artifacts.
Archaeologists were able to determine that the tombs had been raided before and were surprised to find so many items still present. Egypt has a hard time securing their ancient sites and many tomb raiders will steall bodies or antiquities and try to trade and sell them to make money.
The Egyptian government is working to protect these ancient sites and allows archaeologists to investigate them in hopes of beating tomb raiders to priceless artifacts.
The Valley of the Kings is an Egyptian graveyard and there are likely many more mummies in or near the location.
What do you think of the newly discovered mummies?
Image via Wikimedia Commons