Saturday, 27 February 2021

Thames Valley Ancient Egypt Society

ON January 23, Dr Massimiliano Nuzzolo, from Warsaw, showed his latest research via Zoom to almost 100 members of the Thames Valley Ancient Egypt Society.

His team at the sun temple of the 6th Dynasty Pharaoh Niuserra (near the Giza pyramids), overturned ideas from the early 20th century excavator Ludwig Borchardt.

A space before the altar was designated for cattle sacrifice, according to Borchardt, but this was shown to have been impossible as the entrance doorway was too narrow to admit a cow.

The stunted square sun-obelisk set on a chunky platform would also have been too weighty for the underlying bedrock and would have collapsed.

Dr Nuzzolo showed us the temple’s elements of store-rooms, offering basins, chapels to rejuvenate Pharaoh and the land and to render Pharaoh divine, and the hidden decorated passages under the obelisk platform.

However, the exact form of the sub-obelisk still remains uncertain and the associated Valley Temple is under Nile groundwater and inaccessible.

The next lecture is tomorrow (Saturday) on “Ancient visitors at the pyramids”.

Non-members can register for any of the forthcoming Zoom events via the website, www.tvaes.org.uk, a few days before the event.

Francesca Jones

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