Egypt Exploration Fund [Hrsg.]
Archaeological report: comprising the work of the Egypt Exploration Fund and the progress of egyptology during the year ... — 1906-1907

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Excavations at Deie el-Bahaki.


entrance (PI. iii., Fig. 6), we entered a wide rock-cut corridor with a ceiling
in the form of an arch. The door, which is rectangular, must have been
lined and ornamented with a limestone coating, now entirely destroyed.
Near the entrance, on the right side, is a niche about 4 feet deep, in
which we found eight basketfuls of painted wooden figures, all more or
less broken, of the characteristic style of the Xlth and Xllth Dynasties.
What this niche was made for it is difficult to say ; perhaps with all the
figures which it contained it may have formed a kind of large model-house
like those which are found in the tombs of that time, or it may have been
the place where offerings or ex-votos were deposited by the people who did
not like to go as far as the sanctuary. The passage, about 500 feet long,
is at first quite bare, with only walls of dry stones on each side. Except
for the large heap of blocks and rubbish which closed the entrance, it was
empty, and one could walk upright in it. About 150 feet from the door
it begins to be vaulted, and the vault goes down to the bottom. The
"vault" consists of two sand-stone blocks abutting against each other
and meeting along the middle line of the ceiling. They have been cut in
the form of an arch. The foot of these blocks rests on a groove in the
rock and on the edge of a vertical slab. In order to prevent this slab
from falling forward, a wall of dry stones had been built in front of it.
The middle of the passage is quite free, and wide enough for a man to
go down; the vaulted part is about 350 feet long (PI. iii., Fig. 7). The
first of us who went down, Mr. Currelly, saw at the end of the passage
a very small room, where, to prevent the ceiling from coming down, it
had been propped up in old times by timber and by fragments of a late
wooden coffin. In front were blocks of granite partly covered by bricks.
It looked at first as if some tomb-plunderers had made a hole there and
closed it afterwards with bricks; but when these had been removed a
granite wall appeared, with a small door at the foot, before which stood
a loose granite block that obstructed the entrance. The door led to a
granite chamber remarkably well built, exactly in the style of the chambers
of the Pyramids, with the same kind of gabled roof made of two blocks
propped against each other at an angle; the granite is polished and the
joints are perfect (Fig. 8). Most of the chamber is occupied by a large
shrine made of the best quality of alabaster (Fig. 9). It has no sculpture
or ornament of any kind, except a thick torus or moulding. The
ceiling consists of one single granite slab, over which lie other pieces of
alabaster forming the cornice of the shrine. In old times it was closed 'by
a double-leaved door which was probably made of wood with bronze
ornaments. Between the wall of the chamber and the shrine is a sort of
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