CAIRO, Egypt – Egypt's antiquities chief says archaeologists have unearthed a 2,800-year-old burial chamber that boasts brightly painted astrological scenes at a site believed to house the tombs of ancient Egyptian nobles.
Zahi Hawass says in a Wednesday statement the chamber belonged to a priest named Karakhamun, whose tomb was first discovered in the 19th century but soon after disappeared under the desert sands. He says an Egyptian-American team stumbled on the burial chamber while doing restoration work at the site on the west bank of Luxor in southern Egypt.
Hawass says the chamber was found at the bottom of an eight-meter shaft. He said that the chamber's ceiling is decorated with astrological scenes, including a depiction of the sky goddess Nut.
The leader of the expedition, Dr. Elena Pischikova, explained that the tomb was originally discovered in the 19th century, though it was in an unstable condition. It continued to deteriorate, and only parts of it were accessible to visitors in the early 1970s before collapsing completely and being swallowed up by the sands.
Pischikova’s team rediscovered the tomb in 2006 and has been carrying out conservation work since then.