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

Report of the 2000 Season


The investigation of the pottery of the Tomb of Harwa just started and so we can only give a very restricted and preliminary picture of what was found during the four years of excavations in TT 37.

The main aim of the author for the campaign was to get a general idea of the shapes, fabrics and date of the pottery. The work focused on pottery coming from two excavations areas:

1. Entrance of the tomb (Area 200)
2. First Pillared Hall (Area I)

 Excavations in Area 200 yielded and are still yielding a lot of pottery, mainly bodysherds and a small number of diagnostic pieces. As they are coming from the debris being accumulated in front of the tomb over a long period, they show a sequence starting from early 18th Dynasty to 6th century AD:

18th dynasty: pottery of this period is consisting of the typical wares and shapes of funerary contexts: jars for beer, plates and small offering dishes
20th dynasty:  fragments of Nile-silt jars with red surface and rims of big storage can be dated to this period
25th dynasty: sherds contemporary with the first use of TT 37: open and closed shapes, all made from marl clay
Ptolemaic Period: a big amount of pottery dating from 3rd to 2nd Century was found: open and closed shapes, decorated pieces and even fragments of Rhodian and Phoenician storage jars.
Late Roman:
Fragments of cooking pots and amphorae dating to the 4th 6th Century AD.

The work on the pottery coming from the tomb started with the sorting of the different fabrics and wares used in Graeco-Roman time. Four different Nile Silts and six kinds of Marl Clays were at present identified. The specimens are based on sherds coming from  the First Pillared Hall of the tomb. They were sorted and, where it was possible, vessels have been reconstructed. Some of the diagnostic pieces have already been drawn. That work will continue in the following years.

The author completed the documentation and the drawings of 76 complete vessels found during the excavations (1997 - 1998) in the First Pillared Hall . They can be dated to the Ptolemaic and the Early Roman Period.

The study of the pottery shows that the Tomb of Harwa was reused as a burial place in the Ptolemaic and Roman Period, confirming the data coming from the small findings recuperated in the First Pillared  Hall. The work of the next seasons will be aimed to give a more exact picture of the different phases of the tomb reuse. At the end of the work we also hope to be able in reconstructing movements that took place in the tomb during the long period of use.

The pottery of the Tomb TT 37 has a special interest for the ceramological studies, because a corpus of Ptolemaic and Roman shapes coming from the Theban Necropolis has never been published. The pottery at our disposal offers the opportunity to fill that gap in the sequence of the Theban Area.

Top of the page