Interesting Headlines for February 2009

This month, Cairo revealed that they have hit a jackpot at the necropolis of Saqqara (located south of Cairo), where a storeroom revealed about 24 Egyptian mummies of ancient times that were hidden in a tomb dating back 2,600 years. In this article, you will learn more about this newly discovered tomb in Egypt, as well as a discovery that involves the mighty Greek god, Zeus.

The new tomb find was situated at the bottom of a deep shaft that measured 36 feet. Along the walls of the tomb, 22 mummies were positioned in separate niches. In addition to the mummies, eight sarcophagi were located in the tomb. Out of curiosity, only on of the sarcophagi was opened. A mummy was found inside and the archeologists on site believe that seven others are contained within the remaining seven.

This storage for mummies is dated back to 640 BC, during the days of the 26th Dynasty, where Egypt enjoyed its last independent kingdom before it was overthrown by one after another of foreign conquerors, including the Persians. Interestingly, the tomb was found at a site that is dated much older , about 4,300 years into the past , around the 6th Dynasty.

As archeologists sift through the clues, they have found the mummies in poor preservation condition. Their identities have yet to be revealed. They are also wondering why so many mummies were contained in just one room. They did find clues throughout the tomb, such as a name engraved into the opened sarcophagus. It read: Badi N Huri. However, there was no evidence of a title of some sort found for the mummy who was buried in a coffin made of wood. While researchers are guessing that he was an important figure, they have no concrete proof to show that he was.

Another point made by members on the team was that it is not common to see mummies of a late period stored in rocky niches. This was a practice that is mostly linked to cultures that lived during the earlier dynasties, so finding this sort of ritual is quite rare for the 26th Dynasty.

Birthplace of Mythical Zeus Found?

Scientists believe they have uncovered the origins of the Greek god of thunder and lightning , the almighty Zeus. A team of archelogoists consisting of both Greek and American minds has concluded that the ancient Greeks may have first worshipped Zeus at a remote altar located on Mount Lykaion. After analyzing finds at a recent dig, researchers uncovered ceremonial items that are typically used during cult practices. They dated more than three millennia old, which makes them the earliest known sighting of Zeus in Greece.

For a long while now, it has been thought that the first worshippers of Zeus resided on the Greek island of Crete. At least one historian of the classical era names Crete as the mythic birthplace of Zeus. However, the latest evidence found on Mount Lykaion that points to Zeus is as old as the notion of the god himself. The new finds also suggest that parties full of drink and food took place on top of the mountain during the Late Helladic period, which was about 3,300 to 3,400 years ago.