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Archaeologists Discover Statue Of Black Egyptian Pharaoh
Archaeologists have discovered a monumental statue of an ancient black Egyptian pharaoh of the Nubian 25th Dynasty in Dangeil, Sudan, about 350 kilometres northeast of the capital, Khartoum.
The granite statue of the warrior pharaoh Taharqa weighs one ton, according to its discoverer, Dr Caroline Rocheleau of the North Carolina Museum of Art, who added it was: “More than life-size and weighs over one ton.”
Massive statue of Pharaoh Taharqa discovered deep in Sudan
Dangeil is near the fifth cataract of the Nile River, about 350 kilometres northeast of the Sudanese capital of Khartoum. There was a settlement at the time of Taharqa, but little of it has been excavated. Most of the finds discovered at Dangeil, so far, date to the time of the Kingdom of Meroe (3rd century BC – 3rd century AD).
While this is the furthest south that a pharaoh’s statue has been found, it doesn’t necessarily mean that Dangeil is the southern border of Taharqa’s empire. It’s possible that he controlled territory further up the Nile.
The statue of Taharqa is truly monumental. “It’s a symbol of royal power,” said Dr. Anderson, an indicator that Dangeil was an “important royal city.”
There is also a link to further details including translations of the Inscriptions on the Base and Side of this statue. It does appear to be in pieces, but nonetheless it is a remarkable piece of history.
Massive Taharqa statue discovered deep in Sudan - Pictures, inscriptions and an interview
On Taharqa’s belt these words are inscribed:
The perfect god Taharqo son of Amun-Re
The statue’s backpillar also contains a partial inscription-
‘The Perfect God, ‘Lord of the Two Lands, Lord of Action... King of Upper and Lower Egypt, Nefertum-Khu-Re’, son of Re’, Taharqo, [beloved] of Re’-Harakhty who resides in Ms (the inscription here is gone) forever
Sudan's land of 'black pharaohs' a trove for archaeologists
Kush was one of the earliest civilisations in the Nile valley and, at first, was dominated by Egypt. The Nubians eventually gained their independence and, at the height of their power, they turned the table on Egypt and conquered it in the 8th century BC.
They occupied the entire Nile valley for a century before being forced back into what is now Sudan.
At the end of March, the Louvre will host its first exhibition on the Meroe dynasty, the last in a line of "black pharaohs" that ruled Kush for more than 1,000 years until the kingdom's demise in 350 AD.
Their team recently discovered a massive, one-tonne statue of King Taharqa, the most famous of the "black pharaohs," who ruled in the 7th century BC.
Although very much in Egypt's shadow, Sudan remains a gold mine for archaeologists because it has been far less explored.
"Egypt is fabulous, it is fantastic, but Sudan is a paradise for archaeologists because every time you excavate there, you write a new page in the country's history," says Ahmed, adding that 30 archaeological teams are working in Sudan compared with more than 1,000 in its northern neighbour.
Sudan is full of untouched sites, explains Rilly.
"It's absolutely amazing what has emerged. There are several temples, a huge palace and houses, in a place where I would never have thought of finding anything," Rilly says.
Swiss archaeologist Mattieu Honeggar recently discovered a site at Wadi Al-Arab, in a corner of the desert area of north Sudan that was inhabited nearly 10,000 years ago, many millennia before the "black pharaohs," and could allow a better understanding of man's transition to a sedentary lifestyle.