Archaeologists from Brigham Young University have uncovered nearly 1,700 mummified bodies at the Fag el-Gamous (Way of the Water Buffalo) site, around 60 miles south of Cairo and believe that there are many more buried in the same cemetery. A team of archaeologists from the university has been digging at Fag el-Gamous, along with a nearby pyramid, for nearly three decades now. Many of the mummified remains date back to the time when the Romans ruled over Egypt (i.e. from the first century to the 7th century A.D.) even by conservative estimates, they are at least 1500 years old.
The magnitude of the number of bodies found in ONE place has baffled one and all. A nearby village has been deemed too small to house so many dead, since the notable human settlements close to the site all had their own burial grounds.
“We are fairly certain we have over a million burials within this cemetery. It’s large, and it’s dense,” Project Director Kerry Muhlestein, an associate professor in the Department of Ancient Scripture at Brigham Young University, said in a paper he presented at the Society for the Study of Egyptian Antiquities Scholars Colloquium, which was held last month in Toronto.
This burial site was not meant for the royal family and their clan. People laid to rest here are without ‘grave goods’ and without even coffins, said the researchers. The entrails or the inner organs of the deceased had not been removed either- leaving Mother nature to take care of it. The extreme heat and the dry weather conditions mummified the dead.
“I don’t think you would term what happens to these burials as true mummification,” Muhlestein said. “If we want to use the term loosely, then they were mummified.”
“It’s hard to know where all these people were coming from. We are fairly certain we have over a million burials within this cemetery. It’s large, and it’s dense,” he said.
Archaeologists who are now uncovering the dead buried many centuries ago carefully have also pointed out that the corpses appeared to have been grouped together by hair color. They pointed out to a section where most of the buried had blonde hair while there was another section at a distance for red haired people.