Archeologists discover pregnant woman with fetus in Ancient Egyptian burial site

1 / 3
The skeleton of the woman and her unborn child found in Kom Ombo near Aswan. (Egyptian Ministry of Culture)
2 / 3
Pottery found in the grave in Kom Ombo near Aswan. (Egyptian Ministry of Culture)
3 / 3
Pottery found in the grave in Kom Ombo near Aswan. (Egyptian Ministry of Culture)
Updated 17 November 2018
0

Archeologists discover pregnant woman with fetus in Ancient Egyptian burial site

  • The woman was found in a grave-pit, inside a small cemetery, with the skeletal remains of the unborn baby still in her stomach
  • The grave in Kom Ombo, in Aswan province, is more than 3,500 years old

CAIRO: An Italian-American mission has discovered an ancient tomb containing a pregnant woman and her fetus during an archaeological dig in southern Egyp

The woman was found in a grave-pit, inside a small cemetery, with the skeletal remains of the unborn baby head facing down still in her stomach, the Egyptian Ministry of Antiquities said.

The grave in Kom Ombo, in Aswan province, is more than 3,500 years old, Dr. Mostafa Waziri, the General Secretary of the Supreme Council of Antiquities, said on Wednesday. 

The study found the woman was around 25 years old when she died, and her death could have been due to a problem with her pregnancy.

That the baby was positioned head-down, meant the team believed the mother and child could have died during childbirth.

“There’s something very poignant and quite sweet about it, but also very sad,” Nigel Hetherington, an Egypt-based archaeologist and heritage consultant said about the find.
The find was made by the Aswan-Kom Ombo Archaeological Project (AKAP), led by Yale University and University of Bologna. The project has investigated selected areas in the Aswan-Kom Ombo region since 2005.

Preliminary analysis of the mother’s corpse also revealed that the woman’s pelvis was misaligned, which could have been a fracture that hadn’t healed properly.

Waziri said the injury could have been the cause of the labor problems.

The skeleton in the grave pit was found wrapped in a leather burial shroud.

There were also two pottery vessels in the grave – one a small jar, the other a fine bowl that appeared to have once been polished in red on the outside, and black on the inside, a Nubian style; this kind of vessel was popular in nomadic communities. 

The vessels were presumed to be offerings carried into the woman’s afterlife. This was why ancient Egyptians tended to pray to female deities like Hathor, Taweret, and Bes.

The archaeological mission also found numerous unfinished ostrich eggshell beads and black fragments, which Dr. Waziri also speculated was an offering.

Scholars think that beads were being offered to the woman because she could have been a bead maker for a living.

“The beads were common, but they were for the burial for the poor, since they weren’t gold beads, it makes sense,” Ahmed Salah, an Egyptology graduate from the American University of Cairo, told Arab News.

Kom Ombo is about 48 kilometers north of Aswan, east of the Nile River.

Recently, three tombs of cats were also found at a pyramid complex in Saqqara, Egypt, as well as four other sarcophagi at Khufu-Imhat’s site.

Egypt Ministry of Antiquities has been revealing many ancient Egyptian discoveries recently.

Egypt is trying to boost tourism, which is on the rise after significantly dropping since the 2011 Arab Spring.
 


UK teen who joined Daesh gives birth in Syrian refugee camp

Updated 32 min 46 sec ago
0

UK teen who joined Daesh gives birth in Syrian refugee camp

  • Renews appeal to be allowed back to Britain with her newborn baby
  • Shamima Begum and two friends fled London to join the terror network in 2015 aged just 15

LONDON: A teenager who joined the Daesh group in Syria but now wants to return to Britain on Sunday gave birth in a refugee camp, as European governments grapple with what to do with returning extremists ahead of a US troop pullout.
Shamima Begum, whose fate has stirred controversy ever since she and two friends fled London to join the terror network in 2015 aged just 15, told Sky News she had delivered a boy.
“I just gave birth so I’m really tired,” the 19-year-old said as she made a renewed appeal to be allowed back to Britain with her newborn baby.

“I’m afraid he might even die in this camp. I feel a lot of people should have sympathy for me, for everything I’ve been through,” she said.
“I didn’t know what I was getting into when I left. I just was hoping that maybe for the sake of me and my child they let me come back,” she added.
Her case comes as European nations struggle with how to deal with extremists eager to return home following the disintegration of Daesh’s “caliphate” in eastern Syria.
US President Donald Trump again demanded on Saturday that they take back hundreds of captured Daesh fighters.
Trump said on Twitter that the United States was asking Britain and other continental allies “to take back over 800 Daesh fighters that we captured in Syria and put them on trial.”
The demand came as he prepared — ahead of the pullout of US troops — to declare the group’s so-called “caliphate” destroyed, with US-led Arab and Kurdish forces close to capturing its last Syrian territorial holdout.
“The US does not want to watch as these Daesh fighters permeate Europe,” Trump added.
“Time for others to step up and do the job that they are so capable of doing. We are pulling back after 100% Caliphate victory!“
Begum, previously gave birth to two other children after marrying in Syria. Both children died.
Leading politicians, including interior minister Sajid Javid, have vowed to prevent her return, pointing to her lack of remorse for joining the terror group.
Begum told Sky News she was aware of Daesh’s brutal tactics, including conducting beheadings, but did not regret going to Syria.
“I knew about those things and I was OK with it at first,” she said. “They take care of you... you’re living under Islamic law.
“I don’t regret it because it’s changed me as a person, made me stronger, tougher.”
The teenager, who said she had had no contact with British officials, added the government should not block her homecoming because she was “just a housewife” while there.
“I never made propaganda, I never encouraged people to come to Syria.
“They don’t really have proof that I did anything that is dangerous,” she said.
Europe has long been grappling with how to respond to foreign fighters, and their supporters or dependants, caught in Syria.
However the looming US departure has created a deadline for those governments whose citizens joined IS and have now been captured by the US-backed, Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF).
Britain’s government appears split on the issue.
Culture Secretary Jeremy Wright, a former attorney general — the country’s chief legal adviser — told the BBC on Sunday that it was “obliged, at some stage at least, to take them back.”
He noted it was “a matter of international law and domestic law.”
However, writing in The Sunday Times — under the headline “if you run away to join Daesh, I will use all my power to stop you coming back” — Javid insisted the government should strip “dangerous individuals of their British citizenship.”
He said Britain had already exercised this power more than 100 times.
“In considering what actions need to be taken now, I have to think about the safety and security of children living in our country,” Javid wrote.
Other European countries that have chosen to leave the extremists in SDF detention are now being forced to confront the situation.
“All German citizens — including those who are suspected of fighting for the so-called Islamic state — have a fundamental right to travel back into Germany,” a German foreign ministry source said Sunday.
Belgian justice minister Koen Geens told Flemish broadcaster VRT there was the need for a “European solution” to the issue, but appeared irked by Trump’s blunt call.
“It would have been nice for friendly nations to have these kinds of questions raised through the usual diplomatic channels rather than a tweet in the middle of the night,” he said in Dutch.