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labelThe Dig Diary 1999--Part 8

Wednesday 22 December

Today is mainly taken up with photography and packing. All the shroud and papyri fragments are photographed in different ways, and then put away. Here is a general photo and a detail of each.

Left: a set of fragments as mounted


Above: a vignette. A photo of this in its crumpled state will be found on the Finds pages.

Above: a complete shroud fragment. This one, like the others, appears to have a deliberate fold right down the centre.

Left: a detail from a portion of the shroud which has yet to be fully conserved, showing a nice hieroglyph of a cat at the centre.

In the afternoon, after the final rush to complete packing, Julie and Bridget head off to the airport for the charter flight to London. They'll be in bed very late--let's hope it's not too cold. They have done a remarkable amount of work, and, as with everyone, we are sorry to see them go.

Thursday 23 December

Helen and I have not been alone together in Luxor for the remainder of such a season since some time in the 1980s. Our task is to continue with going though the objects, and of course keeping an eye out to make sure that we get the tomb in order before the end of the season.

One thing we have is a lot of fragments from a limestone stela, which is almost certainly that which was placed in the recess of the north wall of the front room of the tomb, although there is no name on it.

We do not really expect to find much in the way of joins, as the whole thing is so smashed up. There seems at this stage no point in copying anything but the largest fragments, but what we do decide to do is to take photos of all fragments at the lower resolution setting of the digital camera, so that we can try and make a rough reconstruction on the computer. The stela appears to have perhaps two registers of pictures at the top, perhaps showing Senneferi before the king, and another showing some members of his family. We need to do more work checking parallels so that we have a better idea of what is possible.

We also tidy away the conservation equipment, and take a look at the glass bracelets. Those which we have come from the Coptic and Islamic periods, and are of several types. Helen and I also spend an hour or so in the shafts at the back of the tomb which are open (A and B), checking what is down there. This is because we expect shaft covers for them to arrive on Sunday.

Friday 24 December

The weather has changed again--it's now very cloudy. We decided on an easy day. Our only real excursion was to see the recently opened tombs of Roy and Shuroy in Dra Abul Naga. These are highly recommended. We took just a couple of pictures. The one on the left below shows the area in Dra Abul Naga where the German Archaeological Institute under Daniel Polz has been digging for the past five years. At the top is the tomb of Ramessesnakht, which might well have been made in an early 18th dynasty royal tomb. The other photo shows an alabaster factory owned by the same family as own the Abul Kassem hotel in which we are staying. I wonder if our former Prime Minister, John Major, who was supposed to be watching out for exploitation of the late princess's name, knows about this?

Happy Christmas to all who are reading!!

 
All text and images © Nigel Strudwick 1999

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