A.—EXCAVATIONS AT DEIR EL-BAHARI.
The excavations on the site of Deir el-Bahari, which were begun last
year, and led to the discovery of the oldest temple at Thebes (see last year's
Report), have made much progress during the past season, throughout
which we have had the valuable help of Mr. E. R. Ayrton, who was in sole
charge of the work for a month. Mr. H. Garnett-Orme also assisted during
the latter part of the season.
At the end of the season ] 903-4 enough of the temple—the funerary
chapel of king Mentuhetep IIT, of the Xlth Dynasty—had been uncovered
to enable us to form a correct idea of its extent and of the nature of the
work which lay before us. It stood on a rectangular platform of rock, to
which led a ramp flanked by colonnades, as in the Temple of Hatshepsu.
Only the northern colonnade had been excavated, but there was no doubt
that a southern one must exist beneath the debris beyond the ramp. The
centre of the platform was evidently occupied by a wall-like construction
of heavy nodules of flint, aligned symmetrically with the platform. The
north-eastern corner of this was discovered at the end of the first season's
work, in January, 1904, and it seemed that it must be the pyramid of
Jlentuhetep III, which, we knew from the Abbott Papyrus, was situated
at Deir el-Bahari. The corner as discovered was photographed (pi. iii,
fig. 1) and then covered up again for the summer.
On recommencing work it was evident that three things had to be done;
the clearing of the ramp, the finding of the southern colonnade, and the
investigation of the central building on the platform. Work was begun
on October 30th. In order to clear the ramp and reach the Southern
colonnade it was necessary to drive a deep trench through the high debris
mounds up to the south side of the ramp.
This was done, the ramp cleared, and the colonnade found. It proved to
be in far less perfect preservation than the northern colonnade excavated