Archaeologists unearth 27 ancient coffins buried in Egypt 2,500 years ago

Archaeologists have unearthed 27 ancient tombs that Egyptians were buried in 2,500 years ago.

The sarcophagi were found at the newly-discovered well at the sacred Saqqara necropolis near Cairo.

Experts say the incredible collection of colourful wooden coffins is one of the largest find of its kind.

Saqqara was an active burial ground for more than 3,000 years and is a designated Unesco World Heritage Site.

A statement from Egypt's Antiquity Ministry said: "Initial studies indicate that these coffins are completely closed and haven't been opened since they were buried."

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Egyptologist Dr Mostafa Waziry, of the Ministry of tourism and Antiquities, posted on Instagram: "Today from Saqqara.. Our ancestors come back to life again..Stay tuned for the announcement of the new archaeological discovery."

Thirteen sarcophagi were found earlier this month, but further efforts have uncovered an extra 14, the BBC reports.

The find is believed to be the largest of its kind ever and the ministry's statement said that they hoped to reveal "more secrets" about the discovery soon.

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Alongside the wooden sarcophagi, smaller statues and artefacts were also discovered by the archaeological team.

Although having been discovered earlier, the ministry delayed announcing the news until Antiquities Minister Khaled al-Anani could visit the dig site himself to inspect the sarcophagi.

The Saqqara necropolis is found south of Cairo and is part of the ancient capital city of Memphis.

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It is also the site of the colossal rectangular-based step Pyramid of Djoser.

The sarcophagi were discovered by a team digging 36ft down and work continues to be carried out to try and work out the exact history of the sarcophagi.

Egypt uses archaeological discoveries as a means to promote tourism, a sector which has been directly affected by travel restrictions put in place in response to the coronavirus pandemic.

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