The limestone statue was found in a “Byzantine water tank located in a two-level tomb,” the Ministry of Tourism and Antiquities said in a statement.
Yesterday Monday, the Egyptian authorities discovered a ‘smiling’ sphinx, which could represent a Roman emperor, near the Dendera temple located about 500 km south of Cairo, the capital.
The limestone statue was found in a “Byzantine water tank located in a two-level tomb,” the Ministry of Tourism and Antiquities said in a statement. Next to it was also discovered a “Roman stele engraved in Demotic and hieroglyphic,” he added.
The stele still needs to be deciphered to know the exact identity of the emperor, according to the Egyptian team in charge of the archaeological excavations.
Egypt has unveiled major archaeological discoveries in recent months, mainly in the Saqqara necropolis near Cairo and on the Giza plateau, which is home to the Cheops pyramid, the last surviving of the seven wonders of the ancient world.
On Thursday, Egypt announced the discovery of a 30-foot tunnel inside it, which could be the path to reach the “true burial chamber of King Cheops.”
Further south, in Luxor – ancient Thebes – the authorities discovered the remains of an “entire Roman city”, from the first centuries after Christ.
For some experts, these announcements have more of a political and economic aspect than a scientific one. The country, with some 205 million inhabitants, is suffering a serious economic crisis and is counting on these announcements to reactivate tourism, hit by the covid-19 pandemic.