While excavating at an ancient cemetery in Abydos Egypt, a group of archaeologists found a tomb with a pyramid 7 meters (23 feet) high at its entrance.
The tomb dates back around 3,300 years. Within one of its vaulted burial chambers, the team of archaeologists found a finely crafted sandstone sarcophagus, painted red, which was created for a scribe named Horemheb. The sarcophagus has images of several Egyptian gods on it and hieroglyphic inscriptions recording spells from the Book of the Dead that helped one enter the afterlife.
There is no mummy in the sarcophagus, and the tomb was ransacked at least twice in antiquity. Human remains survived the ransacking, however. Archaeologists found disarticulated skeletal remains from three to four men, 10 to 12 women and at least two children in the tomb.
The chambers that the archaeologists uncovered would have originally resided beneath the surface, leaving only the steep-sided pyramid visible.
“Originally, all you probably would have seen would have been the pyramid and maybe a little wall around the structure just to enclose everything,” said Kevin Cahail, a doctoral student at the University of Pennsylvania, who led excavations at the tomb.
The pyramid itself “probably would have had a small mortuary chapel inside of it that may have held a statue or a stela giving the names and titles of the individuals buried underneath,”. Today, all that remains of the pyramid are the thick walls of the tomb entranceway that would have formed the base of the pyramid. The other parts of the pyramid either haven’t survived or have not yet been found.