The Egyptian-Australian archaeological mission of Macquarie University (Sydney), led by dr. Naguib Kanawati discovered the burial chambers of two characters from the Middle Kingdom elite named Ramushenty and Baqet II. The discovery took place during the cleaning work carried out inside the two tombs dug in the necropolis of Beni Hassan, in the governorate of el-Minya, in Middle Egypt. The archaeological area is famous for the burials of the governors of the name of the Orice, the XVI of Upper Egypt, whose capital was the ancient Hebenu. After a turbulent period, it is with the XI dynasty that the ancient Kemet finds its unity starting a historical phase particularly florida both at expansion and growth and innovation in art and culture.
To give news of the discovery was the dott. Mostafa Waziri, Secretary General of the Supreme Council of Antiquities.
The mission has been working on these tombs since 2009, but the discovery of the burial chambers took place only in the last week of the current archaeological season. The burials of the two names of the Eleventh Dynasty (2150-1990 BC) did not deliver either mummies or sarcophagi.
￼One Of The Walls Of The Tomb Of Baqet II (ph MoA)
Speaking of the burial of Ramushenty (BH27), dr. Ayman Ashmawi, head of the Egyptian antiquities sector, explained that more than a discovery it was a re-discovery, since at the end of the nineteenth century the British Egyptologist Percy E. Newberry (at work in the necropolis of Beni Hassan from 1893 to 1900) had already had access to the hypogeum. The funerary pit has a depth of 17.5 m and leads to a chamber from which a second deep well 3 m leads and which in turn allows to reach the main burial chamber of the tomb. This is an empty room with a rectangular pit probably used to hold the sarcophagus supposedly removed from Newberry. The burial chamber also has two small side annexes in the east and west corners which conserve a series of food containers made of clay.
He is the general director of the antiquities department of Middle Egypt, dr. Gamal Elsemestawy, to speak instead of the other discovery in BH33. The mission has freed the upper part of the burial chamber of Baqet II from the debris and the presence of the other side rooms suggests that the burial has the same architectural design as the burial chambers found in the tomb of Ramushenty. The mission also found simple polychrome wall paintings in good conservation conditions depicting scenes that refer to the classic funeral repertoire dedicated to Baqet II, as well as a certain number of ceramic vases.
Since the double discovery corresponds to the end of this excavation campaign, the team has temporarily blocked the entrance of the rooms with stone blocks to protect it. The mission will resume work in January 2019 to clean, restore and study the wall paintings, inspect and document the wells and burial chambers for future publication