First clay sealings from SAV1 East!

After a short mid-season break, we continued today with some of our workmen at SAV1 East and SAV1 West – our cellars are keeping us busy.

Work at feature 15 continues...

Making good progress with feature 15…

The results from feature 15 are especially interesting: yesterday, I had the chance to sort the material sieved on Thursday – and, as I was very much hoping for, a quite considerable number of clay sealings came up! At least on 25 pieces a part of the seal impression is still preserved – including royal names, exciting and highly relevant!

Sieving of important contexts continues, promising more finds and especially seal impressions!

Sieving of important contexts continues, promising more finds and especially seal impressions!

Today, thanks to the help of our washing man, I was now able to check the dating of the pottery from the context the clay sealings were found. Of course, this is for now just a preliminary assessment!

Hundreds of sherds from feature 15 have been washed already and are waiting to be processed.

Hundreds of sherds from feature 15 have been washed already and are waiting to be processed.

Both ceramics and sealings cover a quite large time frame – ranging from the late Second Intermediate Period to Thutmoside times. At least two seals give the name of Thutmose III (Men-kheper-Ra) – this fits perfectly to the previously assumed building date of Building A and feature 15 based on the ceramics – both on the sherds from the last season and the newly excavated material. However, just in the last bag of the sieved material I checked today another seal impression came up: unfortunately broken in its upper part, the lower part of the scarab clearly reads “…-Maat-nb” – so probably this refers to no one else than Amenhotep III, Neb-Maat-Re! As of yet, the pottery does not support such a late date… Amenhotep III is however well attested on Sai Island and plenty of pottery excavated this season from SAV1 West is datable to his reign.

New finds and new questions – hopefully we’ll soon be able to say more!

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