Archaeologists have found the remains of a model garden that dates back roughly 4,000 years outside a tomb in the Egyptian city of Luxor.
Egypt’s Antiquities Ministry said on Wednesday that a Spanish archaeological mission had discovered the garden, which must have played a role in funerary rites, in Draa Abul Nagaa necropolis in western Luxor.
Mahmoud Afifi, the ministry’s head of ancient Egyptian antiquities, described the discovery as important as it is a unique garden and no such garden has been discovered before in ancient Thebes, today known as Luxor.
He added that the garden was discovered during excavations in an open courtyard outside a Middle Kingdom (2050 to 1800 BC) tomb.
The head of the Spanish team, Jose Galan, described the discovery as a small rectangular garden that has an area of three by two meters.
It is reportedly divided into equal square plots each about 30 centimeters across. The plots seem to have each included various species of plants and flowers.
Two elevated spots were found in the middle of the garden, which were probably used for planting trees.
Galan added that the Spanish team also found the root and the trunk of a 4,000-year-old small tree, 30 centimeters tall, at one of the garden’s corners as well as a bowl containing dates and other fruits, which could have been presented as an offering.
Ancient Egyptians were traditionally surrounding the deceased by objects they enjoyed in life, so they could continue to enjoy them in the afterlife.
The Spanish mission also discovered a small mud-brick temple attached to the tomb containing three stone slabs.
The Draa Abul Naga necropolis lies near the Valley of the Kings, where many of the pharaohs, including Tutankhamun, were buried.
Last month, the ministry said several 3,500-year-old mummies and more than 1,000 funerary statues were discovered in the area by another archaeological team.
By Africafrique and agencies