the King and his Tomb in the Valley of the Kings (KV47)
The tomb of Siptah
The tomb of Siptah referred as KV47 is located in the Valley of the Kings at the west bank of Luxor at Egypt. The tomb is where Pharaoh Siptah was buried who ruled during the Nineteenth dynasty. The mummy of the king was however found in tomb KV 35. The tomb of Siptah was first discovered by Edward R Ayrton, Theodore M Davis and sponsors of Ayrton in December of 1905. From what was discovered during this excavation it seems that tomb KV 47 was the burial place of Siptah and his mother Queen Tia II. Siptah was the Son of Seti II and his tomb is located near the tomb of his father.
The tomb plan
The tomb of Siptah consisted of three corridors that were gently sloping, followed by a chamber then a pillared chamber and two subsequent corridors and a final chamber that ended into a passage which possesses abandoned lateral cuttings for the burial chamber. After this is the actual burial chamber that was unfinished and inside which was found a granite sarcophagus. The tombs entrance is a ramp with divided stairways. The condition clearly shows that the tomb was never completed.
A noteworthy feature of the tomb of Siptah is that the pillared camber was followed by two subsequent corridors which were rare as in most tombs this was replaced by one corridor and a stairway.
Decorations inside the tomb
The unfinished state of the tomb does not illustrate a very large decoration. In fact only the first chamber and corridors of the tomb were plastered and decorated. Scenes from the Litany of Ra, Book of the Dead, Imydwat adorned the walls of these decorated halls. Also, representations of the deceased with Ra-Horakhty and with the sun disk on the horizon alongside figures of Ma’at could be seen.
The ceiling meanwhile is decorated with scenes of flying vultures and serpents. The paintings inside the tomb have now been protected by adding glass panels.
The next corridor is decorated with text from Litany of Ra and with scenes of Anubis with Isis and Nephthys. The ceiling here is adorned with the goddesses being illustrated as the birds.
The damage caused to the tomb
The tomb of Siptah has seen a severe damage during antiquity by the repeated floods that came here. The major part of the decoration has been lost but some fragments of paints can still be seen here and there on the wall. The uncompleted state can be seen from the red outlines which were drawn by the mason but were never really finished.
The transverse burial chamber at the end of the tomb was undecorated but contained the red granite cartouche shaped outer sarcophagus of the ruler Siptah. The vertical masons mark show that it was intended that more pillars were to be cut but the plan remained unexecuted.
The tomb of Siptah is currently open to visitors. Tickets can be bought at the gate.