Another Chip Off the Old Block

While working with Nicholas Reeves on his Expedition to the Valley of the Kings in 1999, we came across a level of debris that had included material that had been tossed out of the royal tombs when they were cleared. This included not only limestone chippings, but also the occasional broken shabti, bit of faience, ostracon, and a large fragment of a cavetto cornice in red granite. I had remembered that the sarcophagus in the nearby tomb of Horemheb (KV57) and thought that it might belong to it. We went with our colleagues from the Antiquities Service to see if it might fit and indeed it did complete a missing section of the rim of the sarcophagus and it was glued back into place.

The sarcophagus of Horemheb is carved out of a block of red granite measuring 2.72m in length, 1.15m in width, and 1.41m in height (with the lid).

Along the top edges of the sarcophagus ran the cavetto cornice which had been cut with three slots for wooden cleats as part of the ancient repairs to a split the rim and where our piece had broken off.

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