Giza, the mysterious discovery near the pyramid of Khufu

A team of Egyptian and Japanese researchers working in Giza, Egypt, has identified what may be a previously unknown “L”-shaped structure under the sand: it may have served as an entrance to the tomb. This discovery was made using ground-penetrating radar technology in an ancient cemetery next to the Great Pyramid of Khufu. The discovery was published in the “Archaeological Exploration” magazine. Researchers from Higashi Nippon International University, Tohoku University, and the National Institute for Astronomy and Geophysics Research in Egypt conducted a subsurface sand survey in an area previously considered empty in the Western Cemetery of Giza. According to the researchers, the Western Cemetery is “an important burial place for members of the royal family and senior officials,” and is densely populated with mastabas, a type of tomb containing rectangular funerary chapels that provide access to columns connected to underground burial chambers. .

However, in the center of the tomb there was an empty space, devoid of surface structures and on which no notable excavations had been carried out. Over the course of two years, starting in 2021, the team conducted a geophysical survey, using a combination of ground-penetrating radar and electrical resistivity tomography to see beneath the surface. Surveys have revealed anomalies that they believe “may be vertical limestone walls or columns leading to the tomb structure.”

The team of archaeologists then conducted another series of surveys using another type of ground-penetrating radar to determine what the large anomaly looked like, Adnkronos reported. The results indicated the presence of an “L”-shaped structure with dimensions of approximately 3.5 meters by 3.5 metres, and located at a depth of six and a half meters underground. Researchers are still unsure of its purpose. It may have been the entrance to a tomb or later a sand-filled building site. However, it appears to be connected to another structure measuring 33 by 33 meters and up to five feet underground. Without further exploration, its function remains ultimately unclear.

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