The second of a pair of fallen statues of King Tut's grandfather has been revealed at the tomb where he was buried, Egypt's antiquities minister announced May 31.
It was discovered at Kom el-Hettan, on the west bank of Luxor. The statue is located in the passageway leading to the funerary temple's third gate, or pylon, some 200 meters (656 feet) behind the Colossi of Memnon, which guarded the first gate.
"The statue is the northern one of a pair of colossi that were once placed at the gate of the third pylon," Hawass wrote in his blog. A previous excavation revealed the back of one of the two statues’ thrones.
Both statues probably collapsed during an ancient earthquake, Hawass said, though parts of them were still visible in a layer of sediment. The other parts will be gradually uncovered for conservation, and the statue will stand restored in its original location in the near future.
The statue pair are unique in their well-carved alabaster, according to Hourig Sourouzian, who is mission leader of the Colossi of Memnon and Amenhotep III Temple Conservation Project. The stone, hewn in the quarries of Hatnub in Middle Egypt, was rarely used for such colossal statues. The pair of statues from Kom el-Hettan are the only preserved examples of their size, reaching an estimated height of 59 feet (18 m).
Another statue of Tut's grandfather, this one a depiction in red granite, was reported in October 2010 and showed the king wearing a double crown and seated on a throne next to the Theban god Amun.
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