Egypt Exploration Fund [Hrsg.]
Archaeological report: comprising the work of the Egypt Exploration Fund and the progress of egyptology during the year ... — 1894-1895

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Alexandria, South of the Boulevard de Rosette.


work down in it on April 15th. On April 22nd a passage was found
crossing the shaft at 10 feet below the level of the gallery. We broke
out on the left and found that a large chamber opened out at once,
whose walls were of small stones, mortared, and its roof of brick. The
door, communicating with the shaft which we had descended, was 2 feet
8 inches broad, and the breadth of the whole chamber 17 feet. The
chamber, however, was filled up almost entirely with dampish earth,
although the roof, so far as I could see it, was not broken at any point:
only the under face of it had fallen in on the earth below. We cleared
away the earth at the entrance in order to penetrate into the chamber,
and by dint of crawling along under the roof, reached its opposite wall,
from which a passage opened, also filled up to the top. The confined
space, admitting only of one pickaxe being used at a time, and the
necessity of hauling everything up the shaft, caused the work to proceed
very slowly, and we had made little impression on the earth in the
chamber by April 29th, the date fixed by the withdrawal of the sappers
and my own departure from Egypt for the close of operations. I had the
frames withdrawn from the gallery, but a door left, so that the work could
be resumed easily in the coming season, if it were thought desirable.

What, however, had I found ? A very large brick structure of a
residential character, certainly of Roman date, and probably not very
early Roman, so packed with earth, that the filling must have been done
by human labour. This filling, therefore, must have been the work of
those who piled up the mound before erecting the Fort above; and it
seems most probable that these same bands would have rifled thoroughly
the brick chambers before filling them. Neither, therefore, does the
building seem much worth exploring for its own architectural or
historic interest, nor for the chance of its containing artistic treasures.

Seeing, however, that the lowest point reached by my working party
was not nearly so low as the level of the Roman pavement found hard by
in the Zogheb plot, there is reason to suppose that much exists below
this particular chamber, whose own floor even we did not touch. To work
below the point reached by us would be a matter of ever-increasing diffi-
culty, owing to the small space available and the want of ventilation. It
would be probably best to abandon altogether our gallery and shaft, and
run a sloping adit from outside, cutting through all obstructing walls.
Our own early experience, however, demonstrated how slow and painful
this operation might prove to be ; and, in any case, I fear that anyone
exploring this structure would have to reckon on expending much time
aud money before arriving at a result, very possibly without ever arriving
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