Archaeologists Find Rare Roman Statue… in Egypt

If you’re an archaeologist, Egypt has got to be the place to go! Not only are they finding Eqyptian artifacts over there, but now they’re finding Roman ones, too!

From Newsweek:

Archaeologists in Egypt have unearthed the bust of Roman Emperor Marcus Aurelius, who was best known for his philosophical interests.

They made the discovery in the Temple of Kom Ombo, where a years-long project is being done to preserve the site from groundwater damage, The Associated Press reports.

The team also found other artifacts, including a shrine for the god Osiris-Ptah-Neb at a temple in Luxor, which is a few hours away from Kom Ombo. Additionally, a stone panel with a ram and goose sketched on it was found on an offering table, the Ministry of Antiquities announced on Sunday, AP reports.

In early March, archaeologists found multiple pieces of a King Ramses II statue in the Temple of Kom Ombo. The finding marks is of great importance because previously there was limited evidence that the temple was used during the ancient Egyptian modern state-era, according to Egypt Independent.

The rest of the statue has yet to be found, but archaeologists plan to continue their efforts at the site to hopefully uncover it. Another recent notable finding at the temple is the discovery of a sandstone carving that is believed to be the oldest carving ever found in Kom Ombo.

The Temple of Kom Ombo, which is open to the public, is a unique attraction in the country because unlike other sites, it’s dedicated to two different gods—the local crocodile god Sobek and Haroeris.

From the Daily Mail:

The bust of Emperor Marcus Aurelius discovered in Aswan is particularly unusual, the experts say, as statues to this ruler are not common in the area.

The ancient head has remained largely intact over the years, and the wavy beard and hair can still clearly be seen.

Earlier this year, archaeologists announced the discovery of a partial statue depicting one of the most famous pharaohs in Aswan – Ramses II.

The head and chest were also discovered in the Temple of Kom Ombo during the ongoing efforts to protect the site from groundwater.

Aurelius ruled from 161-180 AD, and his death is said to have marked the beginning of the end for the Western Roman Empire.