An Egyptian Tomb from the Time of Moses

Egyptian-tomb 3300 years old

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Photo: 3300-year-old Egyptian Tomb

Credit: Photo courtesy Kevin Cahail

Live Science has a fascinating article describing the discovery of a 3,300-year-old tomb with a pyramid entrance at an ancient cemetery at Abydos in Egypt.

What is fascinating about the tomb is the names of the people who were buried there. Below is an excerpt from the article published in Live Science:

A tomb newly excavated at an ancient cemetery in Egypt would have boasted a pyramid 7 meters (23 feet) high at its entrance, archaeologists say.

The tomb, found at the site of Abydos, dates back around 3,300 years. Within one of its vaulted burial chambers, a team of archaeologists found a finely crafted sandstone sarcophagus, painted red, which was created for a scribe named Horemheb. The sarcophagus has images of several Egyptian gods on it and hieroglyphic inscriptions recording spells from the Book of the Dead that helped one enter the afterlife.

There is no mummy in the sarcophagus, and the tomb was ransacked at least twice in antiquity. Human remains survived the ransacking, however. Archaeologists found disarticulated skeletal remains from three to four men, 10 to 12 women and at least two children in the tomb.

The tomb, found at the site of Abydos, dates back around 3,300 years. Within one of its vaulted burial chambers, a team of archaeologists found a finely crafted sandstone sarcophagus, painted red, which was created for a scribe named Horemheb.

Cahail believes that Horemheb’s family had military ties that allowed them to afford such an elaborate tomb. Another burial chamber, this one missing a sarcophagus, contains shabti figurines that were crafted to do the work of the deceased in the afterlife. Writing on the figurines say that they are for the “Overseer of the Stable, Ramesu (also spelled Ramesses).” This appears to be a military title and it’s possible that Ramesu was the father or older brother of Horemheb, Cahail said.

He noted it’s interesting that both Horemheb and Ramesu share names with two military leaders, who lived at the same time they did. Both of these leaders would become pharaohs.

You can read the article in its entirety here.

The two names found in the tomb, Horemheb and Ramesu (also spelled Ramesses) are similar to names of people who became pharaohs of Egypt. Pharaoh Haremhad and Pharaoh Ramesses were pharaohs of Egypt at the time the people of Israel lived in Egypt.

What is amazing is that these people lived at the same time Israel was in Egypt. They also had names similar to people who reigned in Egypt at the same time Israel was in Egypt.

I hope that further studies of these tombs will provide helpful information about the time in which these people lived, since it may reveal more information about the time when Israel was in Egypt.

Claude Mariottini
Professor of Old Testament
Northern Baptist Seminary

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