Egypt Exploration Fund [Hrsg.]
Archaeological report: comprising the work of the Egypt Exploration Fund and the progress of egyptology during the year ... — 1904-1905

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The Sinai Expedition.


inscription of Semerkhet of the 1st Dynasty was re-found, drawn, and
photographed. A new inscription of Sa-nekht, the founder of the Illrd
Dynasty, was discovered; it shows that this king was of strongly Ethiopian
type, thus suggesting a southern invasion at that time. The inscription of
Zeser was also re-found and drawn complete. The later inscriptions from
Khufu to the Xllth Dynasty had been mainly destroyed by recent .mining;
on my reporting this, Sir Wm. Garstin provided a credit for the removal
of the sculptures to Cairo, and Mr. Currelly undertook that work success-
fully after our excavating season was over.

At Serabit el Khadem we cleared out completely all the temple and its
surroundings. It is proved to have been founded as early as Sneferu, by a
hawk of his dedicated here, and other references. The plan of the building
was very imperfectly known before and many fresh features were brought
to light. A large number of inscriptions were found which had not been
seen in modern times; while the known inscriptions were completely
copied for the first time, mainly by my wife and Mr. Button, with all the
positions recorded and the parts co-ordinated. All of the drawings were
made in full-size facsimile on dry impressions, the only satisfactory mode
of making copies. Photographs were also freely taken, some three hundred
being brought away. The small objects were found in great numbers, but
all had been broken anciently. The most interesting is an exquisite
portrait of Queen Thyi, with her name on the crown: it had been broken
from a statuette, but no other pieces were found. This is in the front rank
of Egyptian sculpture, and is also of great historic interest. It was kept
for the Cairo Museum, but was exhibited in London. Many small stelae
and statuettes were found ; one stela was remarkably dated in the eleventh
year of Queen Nefrura, as if she were recognized as the legal heir of her
father Tahutmes II. Many hundredweights of broken offerings of glazed
ware formed a stratum at the base of the ruins. They were sorted over by
.Miss Eckenstein ; the greater part were of bowls and vases, others were
glazed plaques of Hathor and the cat, menats, sistra, wands, and bracelets.
The names on these extend from Aahmes Nefertari to Itameses VI. Some
inscriptions in unknown characters, from the temple and the mines, appear
to be five or six centuries older than the earliest Phoenician.

The evidences of Semitic worship were prominent here, in each respect
being of a kind unknown in Egypt. Three large lavers were placed in the
temple, and another at the door; these were evidently for ceremonial ablutions,
as the two largest chambers of the temple had a laver in the centre of each,
surrounded by four pillars. Such ablutions as a main feature in a temple
are unknown in Egypt, but are essential in Jewish and Muslim worship.
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