Graeco-Roman tombs uncovered in Alexandria

Date:

Share post:

During routine archaeological survey at an area known as the “27 Bridge” in Al-Qabari district, one of Alexandria’s most densely populated slum areas, archaeologists stumbled upon a collection of Graeco-Roman tombs.

Graeco-Roman tombs uncovered in Alexandria
The Graeco-Roman cemetery discovered by chance in Al-Qabari district in Alexandria [Credit: Ahram]

Each tomb is a two-storey building with a burial chamber on its first floor. The tombs are semi-immersed in subterranean water but are well preserved and still bear engravings.

Mohamed Abdel Meguid, head of Alexandria’s Antiquities Department, explained that the tombs are part of a larger cemetery known as the “Necropolis” (or City of the Dead) as described by Greek historian Strabo when he visited Egypt in 30BC. According to Strabo, the cemetery included a network of tombs containing more than 80 inscriptions, while each tomb yielded information about burial rituals of the Hellenic period.

The newly discovered collection of tombs, Abdel Meguid pointed out, is a part of the western side of the cemetery that was dedicated to the public and not to royals or nobles. The tombs are empty of funerary collections or mummies, corpses, skeletons or even pottery.

“This is a very important discovery that adds more to the archaeological map of Alexandria,” Minister of State for Antiquities Mohamed Ibrahim said, adding that the discovery would allow scientists to decipher more about the history of ancient Alexandria and would also add another tourist destination to the city.

Ibrahim said that this and similar excavations were conducted as part of archaeological inspections routinely carried out at the request of constructors who purchased the land. According to Egyptian law, every piece of land should be subject to archaeological inspection before it can be claimed as a free zone for construction.

The area was previously subject to archaeological survey in 1998 when Alexandria governorate decided to build Al-Qabari Bridge over Abdel-Qader Hamza Street in the district.

Excavation at the time uncovered more than 37 tombs, among which a very distinguished tomb bearing a coffin in the shape of a bed, commonly known as the wedding bed. On top of it was a red sheet and two pillows.

Author: Nevine El-Aref | Source: Ahram Online [February 14, 2013]

ADVERTISEMENT

spot_img

Related articles

Hubble views an old and mysterious cluster

The NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope has captured the best ever image of the globular cluster Messier 15, a...

Archaeologists discover more clues about Devon’s Roman past

Archaeologists from the University of Exeter have uncovered exciting new evidence which could challenge established views on Roman...

Dinosaur die-off cleared way for gigantic mammals

They just needed some leg room: New research shows the great dinosaur die-off made way for mammals to...

Medieval account of Irish battle borrowed from the Iliad

As Ireland marks the millennium of the Battle of Clontarf – portrayed as a heroic encounter between Irish...

Fossil site near Pryor Mountains reveals dinosaur die-off

After 10 years of painstakingly unearthing scattered dinosaur fossils at a site along the base of the Pryor...

Ancient metal coating technology unmatched even today

Artists and craftsmen more than 2,000 years ago developed thin-film coating technology unrivaled even by today's standards for...

Researchers find 16,000 tree species in the Amazon

After decades of research, scientists from around the world have quantified the number of individual trees and species...

Enceladus provides a new kind of plasma laboratory

Recent findings from NASA's Cassini mission reveal that Saturn's geyser moon Enceladus provides a special laboratory for watching...