French and Norwegian archaeologists have unearthed numerous churches, monks’ rooms and lines of scripture carved on the wall in the Western Desert of Egypt.
An archaeological team of French and Norwegian scientists have discovered new ruins of Christianity in the Western Desert of Egypt. The ruin reveals life in the region’s monasteries in the 5th century, the Department of Antiquities said.
“The Franco-Norwegian archeology team discovered a number of basalt, mud brick and architectural buildings carved into the rock during the third excavation campaign at Tal Ganoub Qasr al-Agouz in the Bahariya oasis “, announced on March 13 the Egyptian Ministry of Antiquities, according to the guard.
The recently discovered complex includes “6 areas containing the ruins of three churches and monks’ halls,” said Osama Talaat, head of the Department of Islamic, Coptic and Jewish Antiquities at the Antiquities Ministry.
According to the statement, the head of the archaeological team Victor Ghica said that “19 structures and a church carved into the bed of rock” have been discovered by 2020.
The walls of the church are decorated with “religious inscriptions” and Greek biblical passages, revealing “the nature of monastic life in the area,” Ghica said.
These findings clearly show that monks have been present in the area since the 5th century AD, the Norwegian archaeologist added.
The monks were in the desert southwest of the Egyptian capital Cairo between the 4th and 8th centuries. According to the French Institute of Oriental Archeology, responsible for the archaeological expedition, the peak period of activities 5th to 6th century.
In recent months, Cairo has released a number of new archaeological finds in hopes of boosting tourism. The Egyptian tourism industry has suffered from many impacts from the spring 2011 uprising and, more recently, the Covid-19 pandemic.