Egyptian Sarcophagus Found in Israel

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A sarcophagus (coffin) dating back to the Bronze Age was recently found in the Jezreel Valley in Israel.

Archaeologists dug up the cylinder-shaped sarcophagus while exploring the Tel Shadud mound in the valley.

The foot of the body was first discovered, but after three weeks of brushing away dirt, the face of the mystery person was revealed.

Edwin van den Brink, an Egyptologist and archaeologist with Israel's Antiquities Authority, told The Associated Press that the carcass had a really “beautiful” and “serene” face.

The top of the sarcophagus was broken into pieces covering most of the body, but the head was very visible.

The Antiquities Authority said in a statement that they additionally found “an anthropoidal lid surrounded by a variety of pottery, consisting mainly of storage vessels for food, tableware, cult vessels and animal bones.”

However, the discovery of a gold scarab ring really put everything into perspective for the archeologists.

Located on the ring was the carving of Pharaoh Seti I's name. Seti ruled Egypt during 13th Century BC. He was also the father of Pharaoh Ramses II, who is commonly identified as the Egyptian ruler in the biblical book of Exodus at the time of Israel's escape from slavery.

It's unclear if the unidentified man was Egyptian or Canaanite, but one thing is for certain-he was involved in governmental matters.

“Since the vessels interred with the individual were produced locally, we assume the deceased was an official of the Canaanite origin who was engaged in the service of the Egyptian government,” researchers said.

Others believe that the man may have just been a tax collector or just a wealthy man who copied the funerary standards of Egyptian pharaohs.

Archaeologists plan to have DNA testing done to confirm the corpse's identity.

They hope to find more sarcophagi in the same area.

Images via YouTube

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