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A publication of the Archaeological Institute of America

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Possible Ancient Coffin Lid Handed Over to Egypt

Thursday, October 11, 2018

CAIRO, EGYPT—Ahram Online reports that a wooden coffin lid seized in March at Kuwait International Airport has been handed over to Egypt’s Ministry of Antiquities. Shaaban Abdel-Gawad of the Antiquities Repatriation Department said the lid, which was found hidden inside a sofa in a shipment of office furniture, will be transferred to the National Museum of Egyptian Civilization. Abdel-Gawad said the committee of experts who examined the lid found it had been carved in one piece in the shape of the god Osiris, but its hands are not folded in the usual way, and the coffin lacks any hieroglyphic inscriptions. After the calcined dirt and petrified rat dung have been removed from the lid’s surface, the scientists plan to radiocarbon date a sample of the wood and determine whether it is authentic. To read in-depth about the Hyksos, an immigrant group that ruled ancient Egypt for a century, go to “The Rulers of Foreign Lands.”

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