Polish archaeologists find relic of Cleopatra's Pharaoh father
PR dla Zagranicy
Polish archaeologists working amid the ruins of the ancient Egyptian city of Thebes have found a relic with hieroglyphic text that was apparently bequeathed to a temple by the father of Cleopatra VII.
The Valley of the Nobles, Sheikh Abd el-Qurna, today in Western Luxor. Photo: wikimedia commons/Raimond Spekking
The linen relic was part of a cloth that covered a holy image, in this case in the nearby temple of Hathor.
The cloth was one of various items discovered in an unexplored shaft at a 2000 BC tomb in the so-called Valley of the Nobles (Sheikh Abd el-Qurna), a necropolis in today's Western Luxor.
Other treasures discovered include faience beads and amulets, as well as several ushebti clay figurines – talismanic figures that were believed to aid the deceased in the afterlife.
However, it is the fragment of linen cloth that has most intrigued the archaeologists.
Photo: Dr Andrzej Ćwiek
Dr Andrzej Ćwiek has noted that the site was taken over by Christian monks in the 6th century.
“Probably the monks living in the hermitage, who were bringing everything they could use from the surrounding area, found the canvas in the ruins of a nearby temple and took it with a practical use in mind,” he told the Polish Press Agency.
“We were lucky to discover this unique object,” he added.
The fragment has two columns of cartouches, painted in ink, as ornamental borders surrounding the name of the Pharaoh, Ptolemy XII Auletes (80-51 BC) , the father of the legendary Cleopatra VII. (nh)