Around 100 ancient coffins and 40 gilded statues have been unearthed Saqarra Necropolis south of the Egyptian capital Cairo, authorities announced on Saturday.
The sealed sarcophagi and statues dating back 2,500 years were displayed at the feet of the famed Step Pyramid of Djoser at Saqqara.
The finds date back to the Ptolemaic dynasty, which ruled Egypt from around 320BC to 30BC and from the Late Period, between 664 and 332BC.
Khaled El-Anany, Egypt’s tourism and antiquities minister said the artefacts would be moved to three Cairo museums including the new Grand Egyptian Museum. El-Anany added that another at the Saqqara necropolis will be revealed later this year.
During the press conference Mostafa Waziri, secretary general of the Supreme Council of Antiquities said that the Egyptian archaeological teams found other “shafts full of coffins, well-gilded, well-painted, well-decorated.”
In October, several ancient coffins, buried in the Saqqara archaeological area over 2,500 years ago, have been discovered, during excavations by the Egyptian archaeological mission working in the area.
The ancient coffins, which still bare evidence of their original colouring, were discovered buried down wells in the area, in addition to a number of coloured and gilded wooden statues.
In the past few years, the Egyptian archaeological mission has announced a number of important archaeological discoveries in the Saqqara antiquities region. The most recent of these was the discovery of 59 intact and brilliantly coloured human sarcophagi in a good state of preservation, the discovery of which was announced at an international press conference in early October. The sarcophagi were for senior statesmen and priests from the 26th Dynasty.
Egypt has recently opened the Pyramid of Djoser in Saqqara, more famously called the Step Pyramid, which did not receive media promotion, despite its being a large-scale and important project.