The expedition, that visited Sudan and Egypt, comprised scholars from the Institute of Oriental Studies of the RAS, RSUH students (majoring in the “Ancient and Medieval Egypt” program) and was headed by Dr. Kormysheva, Head of the Center for Ancient Egyptian and Sudanese Studies at the RAS.
RSUH students shared their impressions, described the expedition, Sudanese and Egyptian civilizations, digging timetable and timeline. They talked adout the burial place they saw, with 29 statues and two chambers. The statues were the twins of the buried person (a high-placed Egyptian bureaucrat) as well as representations of his relatives (wife and children). The students also described the children’s necropolis, consisting of 19 tombs. The objects found there included bracelets and other jewelery, especially small frogs, which in Anciant Egypt were associated with fertility and the circle of life.
One of the tombs contained a mummy and it took the students a whole season to painstakingly clean its outer layer from extraneous incrustations of dirt. The mummified person was a woman living over 2000 years ago and her face was still discernible. In the burial chambers there were other mummies as well, the relatives and just people who had been put in the chamer later, as was the custom in those days. The original “owner“ of the chamber had been buried much earlier and hadn’t been mummified.
The students also helped copy reliefs in a rock tomb, the work that took the whole season.
For those wanting to be admitted to this major: the Center will welcome everybody but the admission is not announced every year. The expenses relating to trips to Sudan and Egypt are defrayed by students themselves and the application process has to be initiated a year in advance. If you are accepted, you can participate in archeological digging, visit Cairo libraries that contain a true wealth of archeological literature. The living quarters are rented apartments nearby. The digs themselves are located in Giza (Egypt) and Abu Erteila (Sudan).
The objects the researchers found have ranged from golden jewelry to ceramics.
According to Egyptian rules, no foundobject can be aken out of the country, even including pieces for laboratory research and an inspector from the Ministry of Antiquities monitors the digging process.