Saqqara
It is an open book whose pages tell the story of Egyptian civilization through its different eras. It is the only cemetery in Egypt that includes graves from the beginning of Egyptian history until its end. It even includes monuments from the Greek and Roman eras. Its name is derived from the name of the god of cowardice (Sugar).
Saqqara pyramid The most important effects of Saqqara can be referred to by dividing the area into sectors: the northern sector, the middle sector, the pyramid sector of Titi, the western sector, the section of the pyramid of Unas, and the southern sector.
The northern sector includes a group of cemeteries, the most important of which is the tomb of Kaabar (Sheikh Al-Balad) and the cemetery of Hassi Ra (family of 3, from which the wooden panels inscribed with scenes and hieroglyphic writings, displayed in the Egyptian Museum). Then there are the catacombs dug in the ground, which were intended to bury the ibis after embalming it and the monkey as symbols of the god Jahoti, the god of wisdom and knowledge. These catacombs contain hundreds of thousands of these birds and monkeys, and they were used in the Greek and Roman eras, and texts were found in various writings, including demotic and Greek scripts. This sector also includes some of the kings of the first and second dynasties, which are constructed of mud bricks. In recent years, rock tombs from the New Kingdom have been found in this sector near the resting place of senior visitors, the most important of which is the cemetery of (Hebrew).
The central sector includes the Djoser group and the pyramid of King Userkaf, the first king of the Fifth Dynasty. The Djoser group is considered a group of a special nature. It is not a traditional hierarchical group. It includes facilities (such as the Eid Courtyard (Dam), the North House, and the South House) that have no functional role in the hierarchical group. That is why it is not accurate to mention that the oldest hierarchical group is the Djoser group. The oldest traditional hierarchical group is the King “Huni” group in Meidum. The group consists of a wall surrounded by an actual entrance on the eastern side, and 13 symbolic entrances are all lost, except for one entrance that is still standing on the southern side. The wall includes the actual entrance to the group, then a small hall, a long hall divided into units, an open courtyard, the southern cemetery, the listed mastaba (the step pyramid of Djoser), the Eid courtyard (dam), the northern temple, and its annexes, the north house, and the south house. There is no doubt that the group represents an architectural breakthrough by Imhotep, the architect of King Djoser, represented in the widespread use of stone and in changing the tomb’s design from a mastaba to a stepped terrace. As for Userkaf’s pyramid is known as the scratched pyramid for the large number of damage it had suffered, and it appeared to be greatly deformed. Its original height is approximately 44.5 m. It does not differ in its composition and the hierarchical group from the pyramids of its predecessors, with the exception that the funerary temple was built to the south. In this temple, a huge pink granite head of King Userkaf was found and is currently on display in the Egyptian Museum.
The pyramid sector of Tati includes the pyramid of King Tati (the first kings of the Sixth Dynasty), the pyramid of my wife, Queen Abbott, Queen Khwit, and a group of important tombs for senior statesmen, including the tombs of Marruka, Kagmini and Ankh Mahor. As for the pyramid of Tati, its original height was about 52.5 m. He was poor in his architecture, but on the inside, it includes a group of pyramid texts inscribed on the walls of the burial chamber and the interior corridors with great precision. It is known that this is the second pyramid that includes these texts, after the pyramid of King Onas, the last king of the Fifth Dynasty. As for the pyramid of Queen “Abbott”, the wife of King Tati, was built about 100 m to the north of the mortuary temple for her husband. It is a small pyramid, and it seems that its construction took place during the reign of her son, King Pepi I. And at a close distance to the north of the pyramid of Abbot, I found the ruins of the pyramid of Queen Khwit, one of the wives of the king Tati. There is also a group of famous tombs, including the cemetery of “Mer Rocca”, who was a minister during the reign of King Tati, whose walls are rich in many important scenes and texts. The tomb of Kagmeni, who was also a minister during the reign of King Tati, is considered a record of many secular and religious scenes. Then there is the tomb of Doctor Ankh Mahor, who was also a minister, and whose tomb walls include the famous scene of a boy being circumcised.
The western sector includes the Serapeum, and a group of tombs, the most important of which are the tombs (T, Ptahhotep, Akhet Hotep, and the philosophers’ complex “the Pantheon”). As for Serapeum, it is a name meaning: (the seat or shrine of the god Serapis), and it is a Greek name associated with the Greek name (Serapis) of the ancient Egyptian god (love), meaning: (the bull Apis). Serapis is a compound word that combines the god Ozer and the god of love. The Serapeum of Saqqara is a group of corridors excavated under the earth’s surface, which is designated for burying the mummies of the Apis calf in huge granite coffins. It differs from the Alexandria Serapeum, a temple to the god Serapis, head of the Alexandria triad. Serapeum was used to bury the sacred calf in the 26th Dynasty and used in the Ptolemaic period.
As for the “T” cemetery is one of the most famous Saqqara cemeteries due to its enormity; it is distinguished architectural planning, the richness of its scenes and texts, and the arrival of art in it to a high degree. T was the supervisor of the pyramids and temples of the sun for the kings Neferair Kare and Nai and Sir Ra, of the Fifth Dynasty kings. As for Petah, Hotep and Akhet Hotep held important positions, including a minister and a judge. They lived during the reign of the late Fifth Dynasty kings, Grandfather of Issa and Onas, and left two of the most beautiful and important tombs of Saqqara. As for the Philosophers’ Council is called a place where statues of some Greek philosophers, such as Socrates, Aristotle and Plato, gathered, some of which are still standing tens of meters from the entrance to the Serapeum and near the tomb of T.
The pyramid of Una’s sector, which is a sector rich with its monuments, includes the pyramid of Unas and its hierarchical group, namely: the Sekhm Khatt group, the son of King Djoser, and a large group of tombs of the Old and Modern State, and some tombs from the two dynasties 26 and 27. The pyramid of Unas is distinguished as the first pyramid recorded on Its inner walls are the texts of the pyramids. The ruins of his mortuary temple are still standing, as well as the pits that were intended for the king’s ships, then the ascending road that still preserves a part of its roof, then the ruins of the valley temple located at the entrance to the Saqqara area in the valley. As for the Sekhm Khatt group, it is a group that is similar in most of its parts to the group of King Djoser in terms of planning, although work on it has not been completed yet, and it is located hundreds of meters southwest of the pyramid of Unas. A large number of pots were found in the corridors and rooms below the ground level at the bottom of the pyramid, some bearing the name of the king Sekhm Khatt, and a wooden box containing a group of gold jewellery, and some papyrus papers with writing in Dukai script, and relics and burials of Late Egyptian and Ptolemaic eras. In the burial chamber, an alabaster coffin was found that was tightly closed, and upon opening it, it became clear that it was empty, and there is no evidence that it was used for the burial. This sector includes a group of important tombs for some members of the royal family and senior statesmen, some of which are located to the north of the ascending road to the pyramid of Unas and others to the south of this road. As for the cemeteries located to the north, they include the mastaba of Queen Khnoot, Queen Nabet, E Nefert, Anas Ankh, Princess Edot, Minister Maho, the tomb of Khnu and Akhet Hotep “. As for the cemetery of “Edot”, it is one of the most important tombs of Saqqara, accompanied by a princess from the royal house, who lived at the end of the Fifth Dynasty and the beginning of the Sixth Dynasty. The cemetery is characterized by the richness of its scenes and the beauty of its colours. As for “Khino”, he was the supervisor of Haram and Unas. And he may have lived at the beginning of the sixth dynasty. His tomb is characterized by the arrival of the art of engraving in it to a high degree of perfection. The mastaba of the minister “eras” who lived at the beginning of the Sixth Dynasty (during the reigns of both Tati and Baby I) is considered one of the most important tombs of Saqqara. As for the cemeteries located to the south of the ascending road, the most important of which are the cemeteries of “Nefarhar En Ptah”, “Nefer”, “Air Kwi Ptah”, “Nina Ankh Khnum” and “Khnum Hotep”, in addition to the group of cemeteries of the modern state. The cemetery of “Nefer Harr in Ptah”, known as the cemetery of birds, is famous for its owner, who lived in the Fifth Dynasty and was a hairdresser in the royal palace. Hence, the walls of this cemetery include what is related to this profession. It is also famous for the many types of birds recorded on its walls. The cemetery of “Nefer” is distinguished by the richness of its scenes, the skill of the artist who engraved and the colour of these scenes, in addition to the mummy that was found in a burial well in the cemetery, which he thinks is to turn himself away. The cemetery of “Irkoy Ptah” is known as the cemetery of butchers, and its owner was the chief of butchers in the royal palace in the Fifth Dynasty. The cemetery walls are rich in a group of statues carved in the rocks of the owner of the tomb, in addition to a large number of scenes that represent the stages of the process of sacrificing sacrifices. And the last tomb belonged to two people, namely, “Nie Ankh Khnum,” and “Khnum Hotep,” who lived in the Fifth Dynasty and used to occupy the positions of priests of Ra in the Sun Temple of King Nai and Sara`, and heads of archives in the royal palace. This double tomb is considered one of the largest and most beautiful tombs of Saqqara. Since the early eighties, a group of tombs from the New Kingdom era were found in this sector in the sandy hills to the south of the ascending road, through the mission of Cairo University (Faculty of Archeology, and a joint English-Dutch mission). The graves belong to a group of senior statesmen in The modern state, who took responsibility for the Delta and resided in Memphis. Perhaps the most famous of these cemeteries is the cemetery of (Horemheb) when he was a military commander in Memphis, who later became king of Egypt at the end of the 18th family. He was buried in the cemetery prepared for him in the Valley of the Kings. The cemetery of “Hebrew” who lived during the reign of Amenhotep III and Akhenaten, and “Maya” is the Minister of Treasury during the reign of Tutankhamun, and “Neferrenpet”, the minister during the reign of Ramses II.
The southern sector, which is the sector that includes some of the pyramids of the kings of the Fifth and Sixth Dynasties, and some queens, in addition to the Shepskaf mastaba, known as the Mastaba of Pharaoh. There are the pyramids of Bebi the First, the Revue of Ra, and the Babi II, the pyramids of the queens (Nate – and Abbot and Wujabaten), then the Mastaba of Pharaoh, and a pyramid for one of the kings of the eighth family, called Abi. We will start with the chronological order of the Pharaoh’s mastaba, which came as an expression, as is believed, of this king’s rejection of the doctrine of the sun and its manifestations, among which is the hierarchical shape of the tomb. The tomb looks like a rectangular coffin, 100 m long, 71 m wide, and 18 m high. She was attached to the rest of the hierarchical group, in which the valley temple has not been revealed yet. As for the king, the grandfather of Cari Issa, he is the owner of the pyramid known as the pyramid of Shawwaf, who severely destroyed and the rest of the hierarchical group, and to the north of the mortuary temple, the ruins of the pyramid of this king’s wife were found. As for the pyramid of Bebi I, it is famous for its pyramid texts. Despite the damage he had suffered, he was now ready to visit. It is known that the name of this pyramid is “Bibi Min Nefer”, meaning “Bibi is stable and beautiful,” and “Min Nefer” is the name given to the capital, Memphis. The pyramid of Merry, Inn Ra and Baba the Second is not very different from the pyramid of Bebi the First. Three pyramids were found for the wives of King Bibi II, and they are: “Nate, Abbot and Wujabaten”. Despite the small size of these pyramids, they contained from the inside the pyramids’ texts, like the pyramids of kings. In recent years, more than one pyramid of Pepe I’s wives was found. As for the pyramid of the Eighth Dynasty, which is attributed to King Abi, it is located southwest of the pyramid of King Babi II, and it appears that the original height was about 40 m.