The Antiquities Ministry has posted news that colourful wall paintings, mortar-pits
with feet impressions of children, and moulds for royal amulets were discovered in
Piramesse ancient City (recently known as Qantir) in East Delta.
The ministry’s post said that the Piramesse excavation team of the Roemer- and
Pelizaeus-Museum in Hildesheim in Germany has uncovered parts of a building
complex as well as a mortar pit with children footprints and a painted wall.
Head of the Ancient Egyptian Antiquities Department, Mahmoud Afifi describes
the building complex as " truly monumental" with its extension of about 200 x 160
metres. The layout indicates that the building must have very likely been a palace
or a temple.
Mission Director Henning Franzmeier explains that based on the results of the
magnetic measurements carried out last year in order to determine the structure of
the ancient city, a field was rented beneath which relevant structures were to be
expected. In this area parts of a building complex are located.
In additionto the archaeological potential of the site, he went on, it had been
chosen for its proximity to the edges of the modern village of Qantir which
endangers with its fast growth the antiquities beneath the agricultural fields around.
“The finds and archaeological features uncovered are most promising,” Franzmeier
pointed out, adding that just a couple of centimetres beneath the surface a
multitude of walls was uncovered. They can all be dated to the pharaonic period.
The team has also found a mortar pit extending at least 2.5 x 8 metres. It still
preserves a layer of mortar at the bottom which shows footprints of children which
most probably mixed the components of the mortar. Even more extraordinary is the
filling of the pit as it consists of smashed pieces of painted wall plaster.
“No motifs are recognisable so far but we are certainly dealing with the remains of
large-scale multi-coloured wall paintings,” said Franzmeier. The team has cleaned
it in situ. Future work should see comprehensive excavation of all fragments
followed by permanent conservation and the reconstruction of motifs.
7 February 2017