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Tomb of Maya

Maya was Overseer of the Treasury and Overseer of Works during the reign of the boy-king Tutankhamun in the Eighteenth Dynasty. At Tutankhamun’s death, Maya was responsible for the royal burial, which contained objects inscribed with his name. It was Maya who helped to re-establish the traditional cults and who fashioned new statues for the numerous sanctuaries throughout Egypt. He died around year 9 of the reign of his colleague, the General Horemheb (1319-1291 BC). His wife Meryt (Merit ) had predeceased him and since the couple had two daughters only, the funeral was led by Maya’s half-brother Nahuher who is depicted several times in the reliefs. The Tomb of Maya is located in the section of Unas Pyramid, in the Necropolis of Saqqara. It was found in 1986 and excavated between 1987 and 1991. It is almost 44 m long and 16.5 m wide, with a plan similar to that of the Tomb of Horemheb. It comprises a pylon, outer courtyard, statue chamber flanked by two storerooms, inner courtyard, and three offering chapels in the west. Beautiful relief fragments in the pylon gateway, the entrance to the inner courtyard, and that courtyard itself depict offering bearers and portraits of the tomb owner and his relatives. The remaining reliefs of Maya’s tomb depict him and his wife adoring several gods. Among the objects discovered inside the tomb are an offering table and a limestone stela inscribed for a lector-priest called Yamen. Priest Yamen is represented as offering to Osiris. An elegant glass bottle was also discovered in the debris filling the outer courtyard of the tomb, probably produced in the glass factories at Medinet Ghurab, near the Oasis of Faiyum.

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