Egyptian archaeologists have discovered a massive 2,000-year-old sealed tomb and now they want to open it to see what (or who) is inside – much to the horror of easily-spooked tweeters.
The black granite sarcophagus was uncovered in a tomb deep beneath the Egyptian city of Alexandria in early July. It’s believed to be the largest sarcophagus ever discovered in Alexandria, at 9ft long, 5ft wide and 6ft deep, says Mostafa Waziri, general secretary of Egypt’s Supreme Council of Antiquities.
The sarcophagus discovery, while intriguing, has raised many questions about why a person would require such a large tomb, what artifacts it could be hiding, and what opening the vault could unleash.
READ MORE: The mummy returns: Ancient remains found in ‘empty’ coffin stored for 150 years (PHOTOS)
Interestingly, the sarcophagus is also covered in a thick layer of mortar, suggesting it has not been opened since the Ptolemaic period to which it dates back – between 305BC and 30BC. That means whatever is inside; a person, jewelry, clothing and anything else, would still be intact. And that was a fact not well received by some very alarmed netizens.
Also discovered in the tomb was the alabaster head of a man which some believe may represent the person buried in the coffin. Most ancient tombs discovered in Egypt were looted in one era or another, often leaving archaeologists with a limited understanding of the person inside. This untouched artifact gives the eager team a rare opportunity to uncover the mummy for themselves.
Some people suggested the sarcophagus coupled with the recent discovery of a Neolithic henge in Ireland is either a sign of an impending apocalypse… or a very extravagant marketing scheme for a new Indiana Jones movie.
READ MORE: 5,000yo Irish tomb’s winter solstice magic to be livestreamed (VIDEO)
Spooky guesses aside, the greatest hurdle might be figuring out how to open the tomb at all. Estimated to weigh some 30 tons, moving the vault will be no easy feat. Experts will have to either surround it with some protective dirt and lift the entire thing with a bulldozer, or open the coffin in situ and remove the lid and base separately, according to Waad Abul-Ela, head of the projects sector at the Ministry of Antiquities.
So as not to cause damage to the contents, archaeologists are considering using X-rays, computed tomography scans or other scientific means to get a glimpse of the inside before opening the lid.
Like this story? Share it with a friend!