Private Tomb of - Sheikh Abd el-Qurna (TT69)
Menna, who held the title of Scribe of the Fields of the Lord of the Two Lands of Upper and Lower Egypt, was the field overseer of Amun. It’s believed that Menna worked at Karnak at the Temple of Amun and supervised field measurement, inspected work on land, recorded crop yield and even punished the guilty. Being a scriber, he earned high stature in ancient Egypt. Menna’s Wife Henut-Tawy was the Chantress of Amun and Menna and his wife are said to have had at least three daughters and a number of sons.
About the Tomb of Menna, TT 69
TT 69 is the private tomb of Menna which is located on the West bank at Luxor in the hills of Sheikh Abd el-Qurna. The tomb lies in the area known as Tombs of the Nobles, which has 146 tombs dating to the 18th dynasty. TT 69 is dated from the New Kingdom in 18th dynasty and is believed to be about 3400 years old.
This is a group of tombs which was constructed during 1400-1390 BC when the reign of Thutmoses IV ended and of Amenhotep II began. Menna inside the tomb everywhere has referred himself as "The eyes of the King in every place". The chapel is decorated with flawless scenes of daily life and funerary customs then used in Egypt.
Importance of TT 69
Refined paintings inside the tomb are responsible for the importance this place has, which are one of the most complete in the entire Theban necropolis. The paintings illustrate Menna in everyday life, his family and agriculture. Menna’s closeness with his family has been beautifully shown. Scenes from life in the marshes were also found which are said to have a very deep meaning.
The tomb as today
TT 69 is a classical style tomb which is referred as being T-shaped like seen in most others. Like the other tombs in the era, this has an outer courtyard, entry corridor, first chamber, a small connecting corridor, which ends in a longitudinal, second chamber. Referred as the Tuesday Tomb this contains beautiful images of agriculture, fowling, fishing and daily life. Scenes showing grain harvest are detailing about the agricultural practices followed in Egypt during this time.
Even being never finished, but still TT 69 is among the most decorated tombs at Thebes. After construction, the face of Menna has been hacked to deprive him from his afterlife. Also, God Amun’s name from all places has been removed. The exceptional paintings however has managed to make this into a center of attraction for not just Egyptologists but other art lovers as well, right since the beginning of 20th century.
For public use
The tomb TT 69 has been open for public since 1960, but this has somehow led to the damage of the paintings which have deteriorated. This deterioration can be seen by comparing the present day condition of the tomb with the photos taken during 1914-1916 by Robert Mond. Seeing this damage, high glass panels and modern protective barriers have been installed to protect the decorations on the wall.