A worker disinfects the glass panels outside sarcophagi on display in a hall at the Egyptian Museum in Cairo's landmark Tahrir Square amid the coronavirus COVID-19 pandemic, on March 23, 2020. (Photo by Khaled DESOUKI / AFP)

Egypt discovers 14 ancient tombs at Saqqara

CAIRO (AFP): Egypt’s antiquities ministry announced Sunday the discovery of 14 coffins in the Saqqara area that had lain buried for two and a half thousand years.

The tombs were found two days ago during an archaeological dig, and follow 13 wooden sarcophagus discovered in the same burial spot last week, the ministry said in a statement.

The vast Saqqara necropolis south of Cairo is part of the ancient capital of Memphis, a UNESCO World Heritage site.

Saqqara is the site of the colossal rectangular-based step Pyramid of Djoser.

Photographs of the well-preserved wooden coffins show ornate and intricate paintings, with maroon and blue lines, as well as hieroglyphic pictorials.

Egypt has sought to promote archaeological discoveries across the country in a bid to revive tourism, which took a hit with restrictions on travel due to the coronavirus pandemic.

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