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Ancient Boat Tomb Unearthed in Egypt

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(National Geographic)
(National Geographic)

 

Archaeologists recently discovered another ancient Egyptian burial site. Which might not seem all that newsworthy, except for this incredible fact: It was for a boat.

Archeologists from the University of Pennsylvania, working with Egypt’s Ministry of State for Antiquities, stumbled onto this finding while investigating the mortuary complex of a 12th-dynasty king named Senwosret III, whose tomb lies nearby. They have concluded that a wooden funerary boat was buried there 3,800 years ago.

What does this discovery reveal? New details about how the rituals of a king’s funeral may have played out, according to National Geographic, who partly funded the archaeologists who conducted the dig.

At first, the archaeologists had no idea what the building might have been used for. But they soon realized that it was constructed to bury a large wooden boat that had been used in a royal funeral, in line with a tradition that stretches back to the earliest days of dynastic Egypt.

They also discovered more than 120 drawings of boats on the whitewashed walls, each drawing slightly different from the next.

The royal tomb was dug deep into the bedrock under a cliff. But the king didn’t die here. He most likely died many miles away, and his body was transported via the Nile River. Archaeologists envision a great procession of boats traveling along the river, all accompanying the craft that carried the mortal remains of the recently departed ruler.

To see more about the archaeological dig and the funeral process, read the article here and watch the video below.