HIERATIC OSTRACA OF THE RAMESSIDE PERIODIN THE EGYPTIAN MUSEUM, CAIRO:DOCUMENTATION, CLASSIFICATION AND COMMENTARY
byABDEL RAHMAN SALAH HAFEZ ABDEL SAMIEA thesis submitted toThe University of BirminghamFor the Degree of MPhil in EgyptologyInstitute of Archaeology and AntiquitySchool of Historical StudiesThe Birmingham UniversityOctober 2009
University of Birmingham Research Archive
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We have dealt in this dissertation with 31 ostraca from the Valley of the Kings withvarious texts. They all attribute to Th. Davis and Carter/ Carnarvon’s excavations. Theycan classify into administrative, literary, Funny-signs and few jar labels. From thisspectrum of contents, we may understand that the Valley of the Kings was not merelysuch sacred and inaccessible area surrounded by walls as used to be described by somescholars. Coordinated minor institutions may have probably based therein, beingadministered by a large headquarter settled somewhere in western Thebes. These smalladministrative stations were in charge of preparing works to be executed into somegroup of tombs in the vicinity. That can explain the reason why we find some artefactsof a certain king somewhere else other than the area where his tomb is located. Anexample of this phenomenon is the east foot-hill of KV 47 (King Siptah) where we havefound a considerable number of artefacts for several kings whose tombs were in thenearby area of this king. The corpus of this research has revealed that workmen mighthave probably exploited the Valley of the Kings as a place where they could temporarilysettle down. This hypothesis may be corroborated by the recent excavations which havediscovered a wide-spread of huts throughout the main valley along with its lateral ones.The increase of workmen’s number which took place sometime during the ruling yearsof Ramses IV would have probably constricted the authority to build these huts as a sortof temporary inhabiting extension to the neighbouring settlement of Deir el Medina.