Wednesday, 12 December 2012

Piay TT344 - Zsuzsanna Vanek


I was invited to visit the tomb of Piay TT344 by Zsuzsanna Vanek. She has a paper published Excavation in the Tomb of Piay in Dra Abu el Naga (TT 344) / Zsuzsanna Vanek which was published in this book http://www.amazon.com/Illahun-Djeme-Papers-Presented-Honour/dp/1407308947.  There is a tiny bit on digital Egypt http://www.digitalegypt.ucl.ac.uk/thebes/tombs/tt344.html

It is a Ramasside tomb and shows the typical dress of that period, elaborate pleated  garments. There is a hymn to Re Horakhty twined with one to Amun, nice ba bird, judgement scene and a lot of scenes of him and his wife with the cult of Amenhotep I and Ahmose Nefertari. Clearing the debris from the tomb has revealed a lot of the wall paintings, shaflts and some problems. There are two openings at each end of the tomb, one is a dead end, the other is not full excavated. The burial shaft is believed to be in the east floor but has not been excavated. But there is a big problem with the fragile rock. This tomb is built in an area of poor quality limestone and the tomb has many cracks. It is difficult to ascertain exactly how problematic these are as they have not been monitored. The team has put gypsum across some cracks to monitor any movement and thankfully none has been detected yet. It is possible that it is more stable than it looks as there is a blackened niche that they have speculated is where Petrie put his candle and 1906 reports talk of the poor condition of the tomb. However some kind of re-enforcement is needed before further excavation can be done to be on the safe side. What kind is still being resolved but she only has 4 days before she leaves.

Big thanks to Zsuzsanna, Mansour Boraik, Mohammed Abd el-Aziz for arranging the visit and even bigger thanks to Reiss Omar and his men for getting me up and down the slope.:)

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