Video of a group of archaeologists in Egypt opening an ancient mummy coffin in front of a live audience has garnered a lot of traction on social media. This video clip features several people photographing and filming the opening of the coffin as archaeologists unsealed the first of the 59 mummies that were discovered inside burial wells in Saqqara's archaeological area.
New Zealand's Ambassador to Egypt, Greg Lewis, who was also present at the event, shared the video on Twitter and wrote, "Honoured to be invited by the Minister of Tourism and Antiquities His Excellency Khaled Al Anany to Saqqara for the announcement that a new tomb of mummies has been discovered. I saw one being opened for the first time in 2600 years. Truly amazing!"
Honoured to be invited by the Minister of Tourism and Antiquities HE Khaled El Anany to Saqqara for the announcement that a new tomb of mummies has been discovered. I saw one being opened for the first time in 2600 years! Truly amazing! @TourismandAntiq@MFATNZ 🇪🇬🇳🇿 pic.twitter.com/5oLfAM7zAV— Greg Lewis 🇳🇿🇪🇬 (@NZinEgypt) October 3, 2020
The Egyptian Ministry of Tourism said in its presser that initially 3 wells with 13 coffins were discovered, which was followed by 14 other wells with coffins, thus bringing the total count of coffins discovered so far to 59. This, however, is not the first reveal since the Ministry of Tourism and Antiques has found layers of coffins that will be announced on a later date.
Here are some other images and videos:
Privileged to attend the opening of a recently unearthed #sarcophagi in an #ancient#Egyptian city of the dead in #Saqqara. A credit to the Minister of Tourism & Antiquities HE Khaled El Anany & everyone else involved in an amazing dig. 🇪🇬#Egypt#Archaeologypic.twitter.com/IgsYCekJFz— Glenn Miles 🇦🇺🇪🇬 🇸🇩 🇪🇷 (@AusAmbEgy) October 3, 2020
#Egypt announce a discovery in #saqqara of more than 59wooden #coffins sealed for more than2600years which means 26dynasty according to the Egyptians antiquities experts.— Global Citizen (@BureauAfrican) October 4, 2020
Most of the coffins were well decorated&painted&the mummies look like it was mummified days ago#egyptologypic.twitter.com/rI6zy4odj3
Today at Saqqara. Exciting opening of a 2500 years old coffin lead by Minister of @TourismandAntiq 1 of 59 amazing sarcophagus. Hoy en Saqqara 🇪🇬 excitante apertura de ataúd de 2500 años encabezada x Ministro de Antigüedades. 1de 59 sarcófagos descubiertos @EnEgipto@AABA_Mexicopic.twitter.com/F5YOGPoSlD— Octavio Tripp (@OctavioTripp) October 3, 2020
The press release added, "Dr Khaled Al-Anani explained that the coffins were found in a good state of preservation and still maintain original colours, indicating that initial studies showed that it dates back to the family era 26 and belongs to a group of priests and senior men. The state and the prestigious figures in the community, announce that these coffins will be transferred to the Grand Egyptian museum to be displayed in the hall corresponding to the Assassif environment displayed by the Egyptian Archaeological Mission in 2019 in Luxor, where it was revealed about 32 closed coffins but family priests 22."
The archaeologists also discovered 28 statues along with a huge number of mascots, sculptures and archaeological gatherings.