Sandstone block near Hawara pyramid transported to Grand Egyptian Museum
CAIRO: A 3,900 year-old monolithic sandstone block, recently excavated nearby the pyramid of Pharaoh Amenemhet III at Hawara, was transported to the Grand Egyptian Museum for restoration, Al Ahram reported Tuesday.
The transportation of the block, which weighs more than three tons, was carried out under the supervision of a committee of specialists formed by the Antiquities Ministry.
The block was recently discovered submerged in a sub-canal from the River Nile nearby Upper Egypt’s governorate of Fayoum, former president of the Egyptian Museum Mohamed Saleh told state-owned Al Ahram.
“The block, which dates back to the 12th Dynasty, contains an exquisite and unparalleled sunk relief representing ancient Egyptian solar God Amon Re seated wearing a flat-topped crown with two tall plumes and holding a scepter in his hand,” said Saleh.
During the past few years, hundreds of ancient Egyptian artifacts from several archaeological sites in Egypt have been transported to the Restoration Center at the Grand Egyptian Museum (GEM) in preparation for display when the museum is opened in 2018.
In April 2014, 200 artifacts of Pharaoh Tutankhamen’s treasures were transported to the under-construction GEM where they are being renovated before display in a separate hall dedicated to the young pharaoh.
GEM, situated on 120 acres of land, is located 2 km southwest of the Giza Pyramids and was scheduled to be inaugurated in August 2015 but due to funding issues, it will not be inaugurated before 2018.
The construction of the three-phase project, which includes the construction of the museum’s main building and implementation of the master plan, landscape parks and surrounding site infrastructure, began in March 2012 with two phases completed so far.