The repatriated sarcophagus, as seen on Monday in Cairo.

The repatriated sarcophagus, as seen on Monday in Cairo.
Photo: AP / Mohamed Salah

A 2,500-year-old sarcophagus illegally faraway from Egypt was repatriated to the nation in a ceremony held yesterday in Cairo.

The wood sarcophagus arrived within the United States in 2008 and was housed in Houston’s Museum of Natural Science. It was smuggled to the United States by Germany, in accordance with Alvin Bragg, the Manhattan District Attorney.

The District Attorney’s workplace discovered that the sarcophagus got here from a necropolis north of Cairo, the Associated Press reported.

Antiquities theft has lengthy been an issue for Egypt, and the Egyptian authorities is working to retrieve the hundreds of artifacts which were illegally taken from the nation in latest a long time. Egyptian archaeologists are additionally working to get better artifacts taken from the nation farther again in time, like its Rosetta Stone, which has been on show within the British Museum since 1802.

Sarcophagi are box-like containers for the useless. They had been utilized in Ancient Egypt and had been typically adorned with intricate portray and inscriptions. Sarcophagi constructed for the wealthy or highly effective, like that of the pharaoh Tutankhamun, are famously luxurious.

Egyptian officials with the repatriated sarcophagus.

Egyptian officers with the repatriated sarcophagus.
Photo: AP / Mohamed Salah

The newly repatriated sarcophagus is almost 9.5 ft lengthy. Hieroglyphics, the Ancient Egyptian script, are inscribed on the sarcophagus’ physique, and a big inexperienced face is painted on the pinnacle of the coffin.

Mostafa Waziri, a member of Egypt’s Supreme Council of Antiquities, stated in yesterday’s ceremony that the repatriated sarcophagus dates to the Late Dynastic Period—which means the coffin is about 2,500 years previous, give or take a century.

“This stunning coffin was trafficked by a well-organized network that has looted countless antiquities from the region,” Bragg stated, according to the AP. “We are pleased that this object will be returned to Egypt, where it rightfully belongs.”

Bragg added that the identical community smuggled a coffin that ended up in New York’s Metropolitan Museum of Art; that merchandise was repatriated to Egypt in 2019.

According to the AP, Cairo officers managed to convey 5,300 stolen artifacts again to Egypt from around the globe in 2021.

More: Egypt Wants Its Rosetta Stone Back From the British Museum

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