4,300-year-old wall relief discovered in tomb near Great Pyramid
Tomb of Perseneb at Giza

CAIRO: A 4,300-year-old painted wall relief has been discovered in the tomb of Perseneb, near the Great Pyramid of Giza, according to a statement on the Antiquities Ministry’s Facebook page Sunday.

The tomb was first excavated in 1996 by archaeologists from the Institute of Oriental Research of the Russian Academy of Sciences, according to Aly el-Asfar, head of the ancient Egyptian Antiquities Department at the Antiquities Ministry, in comments to The Cairo Post Monday.

“The new discovery represents a surprise for the Russian archaeology team,” said Asfar, who explained that the tomb was mentioned first by Auguste Mariette, the famous French Egyptologist (1821 –1881), and then excavated in 1996. But Russian archaeologists only first noticed the relief Sunday while working on tomb renovation in the tomb’s antechamber.

The wall relief depicts several boats sailing on the Nile and hunting scenes of Perseneb with his wife and dog.

“Most of the scenes found inside the tombs of ancient Egyptian nobles, high officials and priests were meant to represent their daily life, to draw attention to the their social status and to document their lives,” Dr. Sherif el-Sabban, dean of Minya University’s Faculty of Tourism and Hotels, told The Cairo Post.

The tomb is located 200 meters east of the Great Pyramid and covers an area of about 35 square meters, Asfar said. It consists of a central room with several standing statues of Perseneb and his family along with an offering room and a plain burial chamber.

The names and titles of Perseneb are carved on the door lintel and the burial chamber of the tomb. They include “the high priest”, “the superintendent of the royal palace”, “the main scribe” and “the right hand-side fan bearer of the pharaoh”, Asfar said.

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