LUXOR, EGYPT — A previously unopened sarcophagus was opened for the first time on Saturday as two Egyptian discoveries were unveiled in Luxor's west bank. The intact sarcophagus contained a well preserved mummy of a woman named Thuya and dates to the 18th Egyptian dynasty.
It was discovered earlier this month by a French led mission in the northern region of El-Assasif, along with another anthropoid sarcophagus which was opened and examined.
Earlier in the day a tomb belonging to Thaw Rakht If, the overseer of the mummification shrine, was unveiled along with 1000 small wooden and clay statues, and five colored masks.
Nearly 1,000 feet of rubble was removed over five months to uncover the tomb, which contains colored wall scenes depicting the owner and his family. The tomb dates back to the middle-kingdom almost 4000 years ago, but was reused during the alte period.
Ancient Egyptians mummified humans to preserve their bodies for the afterlife, while animal mummies were used as religious offerings. So far Egypt has revealed over a dozen ancient discoveries this year.
Egypt is hoping these discoveries will brighten its image abroad and revive interest among travelers who once flocked to its iconic pharaonic temples and pyramids but who have shunned the country since its 2011 political uprising.