Necropolis Umm el-Qaab at Abydos

Archaeological excavatories in Abydos constitute mainly funerary site of pharaohs of the Ist and IInd Dynasties. Arabian name of the necropolis is Pottery Mother due to enormous amount of ceramic covering the area. The archaeological site was an object of interest for numerous expeditions lead by such famous excavators as: E. Amelineau, W.F. Petrie, W. Kayser, G. Dreyer.  All tombs were dug in a ground but what was the above-ground construction like? At this point there is a lot of controversy among scholars. Various hypotheses have been proposed by  such authorities as: W.F.Petrie, H.Ricke, G.Reisner. However most liable seems to be a conception of a pile filled with sand or gravel and surrounded with slightly sloped walls 2,5 m high, proposed by Jean-Philippe Lauer.

Tomb B1-B2
Iry-Hor - 0 Dynasty

Two-chambered tomb, reckoned to be an oldest one among those discovered at Abydos. Dimensions of the northern B1 part: 2,5 m (at the bottom) x 7 m, southern B2 part: 4,30 x 2,50 m. In a better preserved smaller part only tiny reminders of funerary equipment were found, including pieces of ceramic with engraved or painted names of Iry-Hor.

Tomb B7-B9
Ka - 0 Dynasty

Two chambers, B7 and B9, constitute the tomb of king Ka. Unfortunately, they both are vastly damaged in their upper parts. Dimensions of B7: 6,05 x 3,25 [m]; of B9: 6,0 x 3,10 [m]. Brick wall 1,8 [m] high. In the tomb were discovered parts of a flint knife and pieces of ceramic also with serekh of the king Ka (however, without falcon).

Tomb B17-B18
Narmer - I Dynasty

Two joined chambers B17 and B18 composed tomb of Narmer. The B7 chamber of dimensions: 3,0 x 4,1 [m] is better preserved. Walls of B18 chamber had collapsed, later they were rebuilt and supported with few rows of brick and in some places additionally with wood. Later the brick was covered with mud mortar and painted white. In the B17 chamber there are two holes, each ca. 65 cm deep. Presumably they were used to stick posts supporting the roof.


Tomb B10-B15-B19
Aha - I Dynasty

B10, B15 and B19 chambers were primarily thought to compose three independent tombs. It is only recent survey of German archaeologists that proved it to be a tomb of pharaoh Aha and, though the chambers are distinctly separated, they might have had shared roof. Wall thickness in chambers: 1,5-2,10 m. Total capacity of the tomb: 11 x 9 m. A series of tombs located east from the king’s one possibly belonged to his nobles.

Tomb O (326)
Djer - I Dynasty

Nearly square-shaped tomb of internal measures: 13,20 x 11,80 x 2,70 m and external measures: 18,3 x 17,0 m, walls thickness: 2,6 m. Burnt in antiquity and restored under the XVIII dynasty became a cult centre as a tomb of Osiris. Here was found a collection of various objects and pieces of equipment, among others stela with royal serekch and mummified human arm, adorned with four bracelets bearing serekchs of the king. The tomb is surrounded with 318 satellite chambers.
Funerary enclosure A (269)

Tomb Z (174)
Djet (Wadji) - I Dynasty

External measures: 13,6 x 11, 3 x 2,40 m, internal: 9,3 x 11,9 m, wall thickness: 0,8-1,05 m. The tombs has 174 subsidiary burials.
Funerary enclosure B (154)

Tomb Y (41)
Queen Merytneith
I Dynasty

External measures: 16,50 x 13,90 x 2,70 m, internal: 8,90 x 6,30 m. Wall thickness: 1,30-1,60 m. The central chamber was surrounded with 8 narrow storerooms where numerous sealed jars were found. In the funerary chamber, somehow deeper compared to storerooms, was found the stele of Merytneith. Actual tomb is surrounded with 41 subsidiary graves.

Tomb T (121)
Den (Wdimu) -  I Dynasty

External measures: 23,4 x 14,0 / 15,20 x 6,10 m, internal: 15,24 x 8,53 m. The tomb was surrounded with thick brick-wall of 2,10 x 3,80 m. For the first time in Egyptian architecture there was constructed stairwell leading to the funerary chamber of 23,7 7 m in length. Two sections of stairwell, parted probably with wooden door, had 18 and 12 steps respectively.
  The tomb was burnt in antiquity and restored under pharaoh Amasis (XXVI dynasty). In the tomb were discovered numerous jar sealings and 20 ebony and ivory plates recording some events of the king’s rule. The tomb is surrounded with 136 subsidiary chambers.
Funerary enclosure C (?) (80)

Tomb X (63)
Adjib - I Dynasty

External measures: 15,10  x 7,20 x 2,50 m, internal measures of the funerary chamber: 6,80 x 4,40 m, wall thickness: 1,30-1,60 m. It is one of the smallest royal tombs at this necropolis. It was surrounded with 64 satellite graves.
Funerary enclosure D (?)

Tomb U (69)
Semerkhet - I Dynasty

External measures: 19,50 x 10,70 x 3,50 m, internal: 16,40 x 7,50 m, wall thickness: 1,50-1,80 m. It is a single-chambered tomb, surrounded with 68 subsidiary funerary chambers.
Funerary enclosure D (?)

Tomb Q (26)
Qa'a - I Dynasty

External measures: 24,90 x 15,50 x 5,00 m. Inside there is a funerary chamber 10,00 x 5,00m and a few rows of additional chambers. The tomb was surrounded with 26 subsidiary burials.
Funerary enclosure - Deir Sitt Damiana.

Tomb P
Peribsen - II Dynasty

External measures: 21,0x18,5 [m].
Funerary enclosure named "Middle Fort".

Tomb V
Khasekhemwi - II Dynasty

External measures: length: 68,97 m, width: 10,04-17,06 [m].
Funerary enclosure - Shunet el-Zebib.

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