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Large inscribed limestone blocks unearthed at Tanis

French archaeologists have unearthed hundreds of 3,000-year-old colored limestone blocks believed to have been used to build the sacred lake walls of a temple dedicated to the goddess Mut. 

Detail of a limestone block discovered by French archaeologists, one of hundreds of 3,000-year-old colored and inscribed limestone blocks believed to have been used to build the sacred walls of a temple dedicated to the goddess Mut. Egypt's Minister of Antiquties, Zahi Hawass, says the blocks were unearthed in San El-Hagar in northern Egypt. San El-Hagar, which was known as Tanis during the Pharaonic era, is one of the oldest Egyptian cities and contains many temples belonging to the god Amun [Credit: Egypt's Supreme Council Of Antiquities, HO/AP]
Egypt's minister of antiquities, Zahi Hawass, says the blocks were unearthed in San El-Hagar in northern Egypt. Hawass said in a statement Monday the blocks may have belonged to King Osorkon II of the 22nd Dynasty (945-718 B.C.) and been used for either a temple or a chapel. 

Detail of a painted limestone block, one of hundreds discovered in Egypt by French archaeologists, was most likely the wall of a sacred lake or temple [Credit: Egypt's Supreme Council Of Antiquities, HO/AP]
The French mission has so far cleaned 120 blocks, 78 of which have inscriptions. 

General view of the site where French archaeologists discovered hundreds of 3,000-year-old colored and inscribed limestone blocks believed to have been used to build the sacred walls of a temple dedicated to the goddess Mut. Egypt's Minister of Antiquties, Zahi Hawass, says the blocks were unearthed in San El-Hagar in northern Egypt. San El-Hagar, which was known as Tanis during the Pharaonic era, is one of the oldest Egyptian cities and contains many temples belonging to the god Amun [Credit: Egypt's Supreme Council Of Antiquities, HO/AP]
San El-Hagar was known as Tanis during the pharaonic era. It is one of the oldest Egyptian cities and contains many temples belonging to the god Amun. 

Source: The Associated Press [June 27, 2011]

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