4,000-year-old tombs excavated more than 100 years ago in the Beni Hassan cemetery have been cleaned and conserved by a team from Egypt’s Ministry of Antiquities. A team led by Linda Evans of Macquarie University’s Australian Centre for Egyptology then surveyed the tombs using modern techniques. The effort has revealed scenes on the walls that were not recorded during the initial investigation, and clarified other images, including one of an Egyptian mongoose wearing a collar and walking on a leash on the wall of a tomb occupied by Baqet I, a governor during the 11th Dynasty. Evans noted that the person walking the mongoose also holds the leash of a spotted hunting dog. Although mongooses were not fully domesticated, Evans suggests they may have been kept as pets to control pests such as snakes, rats, and mice. Or, they may have been employed by hunters to flush birds from cover.
Within the framework of the Middle Kingdom Theban Project, an international mission under the auspices of the University of Alcalá (UAH, Spain) has uncovered over 50 clay jars filled with embalming materials for the mummification of the ancient Egyptian vizier Ipi during the cleaning of the courtyard under his tomb number (TT 315).
The burial of a lady called ” Sattjeni ” from the 12th Dynasty (Middle Kingdom) was discovered buried inside two wooden coffins.
A birdwatcher visiting Tel Dor last winter discovered an Egyptian scarab brought to the surface by heavy rains. According to a report in The Times of Israel, the seal is thought to have belonged to an official from the Thirteenth Dynasty, dating back to the eighteenth century B.C. “The scarab belonged to a very senior figure in the kingdom, probably the viceroy responsible for the royal treasury,” said Ayelet Gilboa of the University of Haifa. Researchers think the scarab may have been carried to northern Israel by the viceroy or his representative, or it may have arrived at the site later, during the Roman period, when there was a demand for Egyptian artifacts.