Wednesday, 8 February 2012

Lost tomb of Amenhoptep - Dr Laurent Bavay

First I have some old blog posts about this and Dr Laurent did refer to his lecture of 2 years ago

Second they have a website which is in French; previously Jon Hirst of Osirisnet had translated their work so hopefully he might again. Also there are some great details on osirisnet eg

Thirdly the lecture
In 1999 the Belgium team started excavating TT29 Amenemope and TT96a Sennefer – Offering Chamber. Now 14 years later under Dr Laurent Bavay
TT29 Amenemope 1417-1401
TT96A Sennefer Prince of the City, director of the gardens and granaries of Amun. The burial chamber with the vines is the best known tomb but this is only part of the tomb. The upper chapel where the funerary cult took place was almost unknown, unpublished with no access. It was cleared in 1903 and Howard Carter made it into a magazine storage giving it a steel door. It is 4 m high T shaped with a 4 pillared chapel.

Its history
1815 Henry Salt
1818 Alessandro Rica (?) made a watercolour picture of the ‘Garden of Amun’ which is now very dusty and faded
1828/9 the Franco Tuscan expedition visited
It had been used as a stable as well as fires being lit inside. To groans from the audience he showed us the damage done by early Egyptologists who washed the walls to remove the soot and this action washed the soot into the gypsum. You can actually see the marks of the sponges.

He talked about TT29 2 years ago and now they excavated south of there. They excavated the modern house and made plans of it. It is important to document all periods of occupation. The house was built in the courtyard of an unknown tomb. T shaped and pillared, the wall painting had gone but the ceilings still exist. There has been removal or attempted removal of scenes and individual hieroglyphs. On the ceiling there are bands of text that give details of his name, family and titles although there is some Amarna damage.

Amenhotep Deputy Overseer of seals, his father was Ahmes and his wife was Renem whose father was Senneferi/Sennefer

This was not a new tomb but a lost tomb. It had been discovered in 1882-1883 by Karl Piehl, a Swede, who published it in 1886 with hand drawn inscriptions. When the inventory of tombs was made in 1905 it was already lost. But we did know about him.
He had a red granite false door which had been removed and was found at Karnak and published by Traunecker.
Funerary cones Davies & Macadam 374 had been found although previously they were thought to be fakes as the glyphs were so bad
The tomb of Seneferi TT99 excavated by Nigel Strudwick had a statue of Amenhotep in it more details

It was filled with debris and removal by dozens of basket men had been a feature of the Theban landscape recently. There is a long barrel shaped hall with an unfinished room at the end. Its decoration was probably stolen around 1850.
There are lots of mummy remains and they are getting help from a New York crime investigation team.
They have found a lintel in good condition and have nearly finished removing the debris and then will build a roof.

The courtyard
In the courtyard under the modern house they found a mud brick structure that covered a quarter of the courtyard about 8m long. I used alfalfa grass to bed down the mud brick. Another pace that used this technique is the pyramids at Dra Abu Naga so they have found a Ramaside pyramid. Evidence of gypsum plaster floor shows there was a chapel in the middle. They have found the feet of a statue and fired red bricks stamp with the name vizier Khay who was from the reign of Ramses II and is mentioned in lots of documents, in the Heb Sed and was in charge of Deir el Medina. His tomb is not known so has yet to be discovered and if in this area would be the first Ramaside tomb here but it does make sense as it overlooks the Ramasseum.

Next week was going to be Dr Laurent Coulon talking about the Karnak Cachette but is now going to be the latest from KV64!!!

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