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Catacombs of Kom el-Shuqqafa (6/14)

Catacombs of Kom el-Shuqqafa

The Catacombs of Kom el-Shuqqafa are hewn from the rock on the southern slopes of a hill, in the Carmous district. Thought to date from the 2nd century AD, they offer an admirable example of the characteristic Alexandrian fusion of Egyptian and Greco-Roman styles. Discovered in 1900 (thanks to a donkey falling into them) they are laid out on several levels of sarcophagi and loculi (shelf tomb) chambers.

A spiral staircase leads down into the ground to the main rotunda. To the right, you can enter the main burial chamber and also the Sepulchral Chapel with 91 loculi, each large enough to accommodate three or four mummies. To the left is a large room known as the Triclinium Funebre, which would have been used for banquets in honor of the dead.

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