A six feet under and 4,500 years after serving the eternal life of Cheops (Khufu, for the ancient Egyptians). With the usual trappings of flashes and authorities, the land of the pharaohs began work on Thursday to take the second solar boat of the king, who remained disassembled in a pit located on the south side of the Great Pyramid of Giza.
Its existence was no mystery hidden low desert sands. A similar vessel was discovered in 1954 a few meters from the current excavation, on the same side of the pyramid of Khufu (2579 BC-2556 BC) on the plateau of Giza.
The first boat was disassembled into 651 pieces survived and was buried on 41 blocks of limestone. The Egyptian archaeologist Kamal el mesh size needed 13 years and 4 attempts to reconstruct the puzzle, since 1982 is exhibited to the public in a museum located next to the seventh wonder of the ancient world.
The repaired vessel measured 43.4 meters in length, 5.6 meters wide and 1.5 meters deep. It is built with native cedar of Lebanon and the old tables are linked by ropes. In 1954 there was evidence that by the first pit was hiding a similar ship, but was not explored until 1987. That's when experts from Waseda University in Japan found the boat through electromagnetic waves.
Nippon and Egyptian archaeologists resumed research in 2008. The images transmitted by a tiny camera inserted into the pit along with analysis of the humidity and temperature indicated that most of the pieces of wood were severely damaged. According to the media minister of Antiquities Zahi Hawas, the withdrawal of the first block has shed light on the conservation of the boat. "It's exciting. The wood should be in very poor condition but I could see it and is in excellent condition."
Hawas explained that the water filtration and insects contributed to the deterioration of parts. Once all the pieces of the ship to be recovered, will begin an arduous restoration, according to the minister, should be completed in 4 years.
The two ships funeral will be transferred to Grand Egyptian Museum currently under construction next to the pyramids of Giza and the opening is planned for 2015. On both ships transiting the waterway history of a civilization tied to the Nile Their woods are a living testimony of the journey of the sun god, Ra, throughout the day and night in the likeness of the cycle of life and death. And a symbol of eternity desired by the ancient Egyptians. The boats have gone through the vicissitudes of several millennia and survived the river that takes us.