Fourteen black granite statues of the goddess Sekhmet were found by a German mission during excavations at the temple of Amenhotep III on the west bank of Luxor, said Antiquities Minister Mohamed Ibrahim Ali.
According to a statement released on Monday, the find inside the mortuary temple of Amenhotep III emphasizes the prominent role of Sekhmet during his rule. The placement of Sekhmet’s statues was for protection, as she was the goddess of war and destruction, Ali said, adding that others believed that Amenhotep commissioned statues of Sekhmet due to an illness, placing some faith in her ability to heal.
Each statue is as high as two meters, and they were found in a good condition.
The statues were moved immediately after their discovery to protect them and to prepare for their restoration.
All of the statues discovered show goddess Sekhmet seated on a throne in human body with the head of a lioness, said Mansour Brik, the head of the Luxor Antiquities Region.
Brik said that the statues confirm that Amenhotep’s funerary temple was full of statues, demonstrating that art prospered during his reign.
The German mission had found a similar set of 64 statues a few years ago.