Archaeologists, who dug at the site ahead of the planned construction of a youth centre, found the tombs contained other treasures as well. The area has now been turned over to Egypt’s antiquities authority.
“Early investigations uncovered four anthropoid masks made of plaster, a gold fragment decorated with engravings of the four sons of Horus, and a collection of coins, and clay and glass vessels,” the ministry’s statement quoted Egypt’s chief archaeologist Zahi Hawass as saying.
The four sons of Horus – Imsety, Duamutef, Hapi and Qebehsenuef – were ancient Egyptian gods. The engravings show the influence of Egyptian religion well into the Greco-Roman period.
The gods were believed to protect the stomach, liver, intestines and lungs of mummified bodies.
Bahariya Oasis is home to Egypt’s famed Valley of the Golden Mummies, where a collection of 17 tombs with about 254 mummies was discovered in 1996.