The "Harwa 2001" ONLUS Cultural Association presents
 The Tomb of Harwa

Report of the 2000 Season


The sum of money left to the Inspector of the Supreme Council of Antiquities Ayman Mohammed Ibrahim and to the rays Hassan Mohammed Shams el-Din was used to remove the huge heap of debris hanging over the eastern side of the entrance portico of Harwa’s tomb. In that area the ceiling had collapsed in two different parts because of the enormous weight of sand and stones resting over it.

The removal of the debris was continued during the fall campaign and led to the discovery of a cutting in the rock cliff over the portico. We decided to continue the dig in that spot improving the accurateness of the excavation’s methodology. At the end of the campaign, a quarry was brought back to light, from where limestone blocks were extracted to build the adjacent entrance ramp of Harwa’s tomb (Fig. 1). The date to the 25th Dynasty, demonstrating that the quarry is contemporary to the tomb, is given by a jar found against the eastern wall of the quarry. The jar, lacking the upper part, has conspicuous traces of gypsum inside and it was probably used to plaster the walls of the ramp.

The top of the ramp was discovered during excavations a dozen meters south of the entrance portico. Some blocks lining the ramp’s western wall, already visible before the excavations, were discovered. In that area we also brought to light other blocks aligned perpendicularly to the others. The disposition of the blocks seems to demonstrate that the entrance of the tomb was through a ramp (probably with staircases) oriented east-west and turning north before reaching the portico. A difference in the level of around six meters was calculated from the ground of the tomb to the top of the just discovered ramp.

During the excavations many limestone fragments with parts of hieroglyphic columns carved in raised relief were found. They could come from the decoration of the walls of the ramp to be still to be excavated.

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