Tomb of - Sheikh Abd el-Qurna (TT52)
Who was Nakht?
Nakht, who held the title of Astronomer of Amun, or Observer of the Hours, was a scribe in 18th dynasty, during the rule of Tuthmose IV or Amenhotep Iii.
About the tomb
Tomb TT 52, is located in the Sheikh Abd el-Qurna part of the Theban Necroplis referred as the city of the dead on the west side of river Nile, opposite to Luxor and the Karnak temple complex. The tomb of Nakht lies east to the tomb of Menna. The tomb is the place where the ancient Egyptian official Nakht was buried. It’s said that the tomb of Nakht was never completed but plastered and had no funerary scenes. Wall paintings in the vestibule are well-preserved and beautiful and some of these became very famous due to the striking art.
TT 52 tomb’s plan is similar to that seen in most other tombs of the 18th dynasty possessing an open courtyard, two chambers on the inside depicting a T structure and a subterranean complex. The tombs actual date of construction seems somehow vague as no images of the pharaoh or other characters from that era can be seen inside.
The paintings seen are also similar to those seen in other tombs like TT 38, TT 75, TT 108 and more. Details of female figures and the many details cited in the scenes show that the decoration of Nakht’s tomb was completed when the reign of Amenhotep III was there. It’s estimated that to complete a small tomb complex like TT 52 also a span of six months would have been taken to finish only the decorations not including the excavation and plastering.
The modern day tomb
The tomb was found in 1889 by explorers from Europe after its discovery by the local people at Qurna village. The survey by Norman de Garis Davies, which was based on his study between 1907 and 1910, led to the finding of a statue of Nakht, which was found in the debris and measured 40 cm in height. The flow of tourists to this place has led to the fading away of the original colors. Seeing the deterioration protective glass has been installed inside the tomb which has somehow led to the fall in the number of visitors. But people still come here to see some of the best artworks from Egyptian history.
The tomb can be visited from 6 am till 4 pm during the winter season. The combined ticket for the tombs of Menna and Nakht can be bought from the ticket office at EGP 25. Photography inside all these tombs is an offence which can lead to a huge penalty if disobeyed by any person.
The bottom line
Tomb of Nakht, known as tomb number TT 52, who was a scribe of the Granaries is one of the better known tombs in the Theban necropolis among the tombs of the nobles. The paintings in this tomb have lasted the test of time and various scenes depicting life in that era can still be seen on the walls.