Monthly Archives: May 2018

Our Work in May

The work of the South Asasif team continues in all the areas of the necropolis with incredible results.

We had a wonderful breakfast with our workmen to celebrate the start of Ramadan.

Figure 1

The excavation team of Reis Mohamed Ali, Marion Brew, inspector Mohamed Khalifa Ahmed and Katy Bell are still following the remains of the northern wall of the superstructure of the tomb of Karabasken. The traces were almost lost on higher ground but recently resurfaced at a lower level of the terrain, with as many as three courses of the original bricks preserved in situ.

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John Billman, the head of the object registration and catalogization project enjoys the recent finds in his “office” in the tomb of Irtieru.

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Reconstruction of the Tornische area in the tomb of Karakahamun is also in full swing. Today was a big day of the arrival of the lintel carved by our stone cutters. A large group of builders, stone cutters and conservators watched its progress down into the court of the tomb and celebrated its arrival. The participants of this event on the photo are Ahmed Bedawy, Mohamed Gamal, Abd El Hady Abd, Hamdi Abdel Fatah, Ali Hassan Radwan, Ahmed Mustafa Maraa, Mohamed Ahmed Attia, Hassan Mustafa Ali, Hassan Dimerdash, Mohamed El Azeb Hakem, Ali Taib Mohamed, Abdelrazk Mohamed Ali.

Members of the team BD 17 Francesca Jones and Annie Howard continue sorting the fragments of the text by column finding new joins in the process. In previous years they amassed a corpus of 135 fragments whose position can be identified in the 112 columns of the text. They explain the significance of the new join on the photograph above in their own words:

“Great excitement was felt earlier in the week, when we found a new piece with half each of a horned viper (I9) and a basket (V31) and a reed (M17) depicted, and were able to locate it to column 75. Not only that, but we already had another piece from the same column with half a horned viper and basket and a reed. A join! The photo shows us with this join, the first of two this week!

We would like to thank all the team for their help in locating possible fragments, and for helping to move the sometimes very heavy stones to where they can be worked on.”

– Francesca and Annie

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More soon! Continue following our blog!

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Highlights from Our First Month

Our first month in South Asasif was full of hard work and excitement. Everybody is happy to be back at the site and contribute to the success of the season.

Figure 1

Reis Mohamed Ali, Abdelrazk Mohamed Ali, Hassan Mohammed Ali, Ali Hassan, Mohamed Hakim, Mohamed Shebib, Mohamed Bedawy, Hassan Dimmerdash, Mohamed Ali Abdullah, Taib Said, Hussein Ahmed Hussein, Dr. Elena Pischikova, Dr. Katherine Blakeney, John Billman, Mohamed Khalifa Mohamed, Ali Taib Mohamed, Ramadan Ahmed Ali, Ez El Din Kamal El Noby, Ahmed Bogdady,

The work began with the recording of the superstructure of the tomb of Karakhamun and clearing of the superstructure of the tomb of Karabasken. Dieter Eigner, the architect of the team, was instrumental in both projects. He interpreted the intricacies of Karakhamun’s superstructure (on the photograph with Elena Pischikova)

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and assisted the excavation team of Marion Brew, Sharon Davidson and Hassan Mohamed Ali in surveying the area of Karabasken’s superstructure.

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The excavation team led by Marion Brew (on the photograph with Katy Bell) has already reached remarkable results by finding the remains of the wall above the entrance to the underground part of the tomb and a section of the enclosure wall to the north of the open court.

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Photography of Karakhamun’s superstructure proved to be a real adventure for Katherine Blakeney and Abdelrazk Mohamed Ali. To find a high enough angle they had to build their personal “Eiffel tower” to the west of the tomb.

Figure 5

The conservation team is working on the reconstruction of the Tornische area (entrance to the underground part of the tomb) in the tomb of Karakhamun based on the architectural features still in situ and the reconstruction drawing by Dieter Eigner.

Despite being one of the most destroyed features of the tomb this originally richly decorated area still contains some of the most sophisticated relief carving in Karakhamun. Most of the images were reduced to numerous small pieces and their reconstruction requires a lot of time, patience and skill. This series of photographs shows the work of done by Said Ali Hassan, Katherine Blakeney and Abdelrazk Mohamed Ali on the reconstruction of the figure of one of the offering bearers originally from the south wall of the niche. The process began with the reconstruction of the figure in a sandbox, and continued with transferring the outlines of the figure to the surface of a new limestone block, carving the figure in sunk relief and then using the depression to embed the original fragments, carved in raised relief. The photo shows one of the eight figures originally forming the procession.

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These are only a few activities of the South Asasif Project in 2018. We will be covering different aspects of our work this summer in future blog posts.