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Colossal Statues of Tut’s Grandfather Resurface

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Colossal statues of King Amenhotep III, believed to be the grandfather of King Tutankhamun, continue to pop up like mushrooms on the west bank of the Nile near Luxor, Egypt.

Zahi Hawass, Minister of State for Antiquities, announced today that his team of Egyptian archaeologists found a 13-meter (42-foot) tall statue fragmented in seven large quartzite blocks.

Missing the head, the broken statue was unearthed near the pharaoh’s mortuary temple on Luxor’s west bank during routine excavation work.

The ninth ruler of the 18th Dynasty, Amenhotep III (1390-1352 B.C.), reigned for 38 years during a time when Egypt was at the height of its prosperity and cultural development.

Possibly ruined by floods and devastated by a severe earthquake in 27 B.C., the temple was apparently the largest of its class ever built.

Originally, it had two entrances: one on the eastern side guarded by two (still standing) gigantic statues of the pharaoh, known as the Colossi of Memnon, and one at the northern side.

According to Hawass, the newly discovered statue is one of a pair that once flanked the northern entrance of the 3,400-year-old building.

The pair were previously discovered by two Egyptologists, Labib Habachi and Gerhard Haeny, in the 1970s.

“These Egyptologists documented both statues and left them on site, hidden in the sand,” Hawass said in a statement.

His team hopes to complete the statue, possibly unearthing the head and his twin, in the next digging season.

“The blocks are currently undergoing restoration in an attempt to re-erect the statue in its original position,” Hawass said…

Via http://news.discovery.com/archaeology/colossal-statues-of-tuts-grandfather-resurface-110426.html

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Written by Nokgiir

April 28, 2011 at 12:31 am

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