Egypt has returned nearly 200 ancient coins to their modern homelands after they were seized by officials being trafficked into the country.
Envoys from Jordan, Iraq, Saudi Arabia and China attended a special ceremony at the Egyptian Museum in Tahrir, Cairo, on 12th December, to receive the coins.
To celebrate the handover, Egyptian officials put on a lavish display of priceless jewellery and treasures that once belonged to Queen Ahhotep I more than 3,500 years ago.
The Egyptian Ministry of Tourism and Antiquities said in a statement obtained by Newsflash: “The exhibition also includes a sarcophagus belonging to a lady called Isis-Wort from the 26th Dynasty, being displayed to the public for the first time. “
Director General of the Egyptian Museum in Tahrir Sabah Abdel-Razek explained that the exhibition included spectacular jewellery from Ahhotep I’s collection.
One wide gold necklace is decorated with a falcon’s head.
A gold chain decorated with a scarab amulet inlaid with brilliant lapis lazuli was put on display at the museum’s entrance.
The display also included a mirror made of gold and bronze with a cedarwood handle, along with a wooden hand fan covered in gold with scenes depicting the worshipping of King Kamose on the side.
Kamose – Ahhotep’s son – was reportedly the last Pharaoh of the Theban Seventeenth Dynasty, who reigned between 1555 and 1550 BC.
Abdel-Razek explained that the pieces were found by an archaeologist named Mariette in the tomb of Queen Ahhotep I in Draa’ Abul Naga Necropolis, located on the West Bank of the Nile at Thebes, Egypt, in 1859.
They reportedly originate from the period of the beginning of the New Kingdom, which lasted from the 16th to the 11th century BC.