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date: 11 August 2020

Abstract and Keywords

The construction of a royal tomb was a complex enterprise. Once the vizier and other high-ranking officials had chosen a suitable location, the workmen used mallets and chisels to hew the tomb out of the rock. While the rough cutting of the tomb was taking place, the walls were being rendered and reliefs and polychrome decorations applied. Each tomb was larger than its predecessor: was longer and had wider corridors, more pillars, and more chambers. As the tomb grew longer, lamps were required to provide light, and the twice-daily distribution of wicks suggests that the work was organized in two shifts. At times the workmen lived in simple huts, usually near the tomb under construction. As suggested by the presence of vessels, hearths, stelae, and head rests, the huts were used by the workmen to cook their food worship deities, and to sleep.

Keywords: foundation deposits, cracks, chisels, mallets, measuring tools, living quarters, protective deities, working shifts, supply of food, equipment

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