Dr. Otto Schaden has posted an update to his webpage stating that the excavation of KV63, the tomb/mummy cache he discovered back in 2005, has been completed. This milestone was passed this fall when the remaining sealed jars discovered in KV63 were opened and their contents examined. In addition to seven empty (except for smashed jars and mummification tools) coffins, Dr. Schaden’s team discovered 28 large storage jars in one of the chambers of KV63, most of them sealed.
But with all the jars now opened, work on KV63 is far from over and the most exciting discoveries are certainly yet to come.
Dr. Schaden had three major goals for the 2009 season: finish mapping the KV63 complex, open and examine the sixteen jars that remained sealed, and get as far as possible into the process of removing the resin from the coffins (Source: Schaden, Otto J. “KV63 Season 2009.” KMT vol. 20, no. 3, pp. 18-29). On March 17, 2009, Dr. Schaden announced that the mapping had been completed. With the opening of the remaining jars, that leaves the coffins.
Of course, treatment and analysis of the coffins is just one part, albeit a major one, of the work ahead. We still have no idea of what purpose KV63 originally served. It was probably intended to be a tomb, but for who? It appears to be constructed in a style consistent with Eighteenth Dynasty tombs. Was it temporary storage for the mummy of someone we may have heard of? The removal of the resin from the coffins could reveal clues as to who they were made for, which may tell us something about KV63.
The journal entry states that in addition to the work on the coffins, Dr. Schaden’s team will begin more specialized studies of some of the other artifacts in early 2010. There is also a section on the symposium held to mark the opening of the Carter House back in November, and some additional projections about 2010. You can read Dr. Schaden’s journal and follow the team’s progress at the official KV-63 website.
There is an article in the works for Em Hotep! which will serve as a reference point for future discoveries, stories, and announcements about KV63. The reference article will begin with Dr. Schaden’s serendipitous discovery and will bring the reader up to the current season. If you have been following the story of KV63 as it unfolded, then the coming reference article may not have much news for you, but if you don’t know KV63 from R2D2, then expect a full account here in early January!
Copyright by Keith Payne, 2009. All rights reserved.