Kom al-Ahmer / Kom Wasit Archaeological Project

The investigation of two inter-connected archaeological sites in the Beheira region. Project director: Cristina Mondin, Mohamed Kenawi, Michele Asolati, and Giorgia Marchiori (field director).

This project focuses on the investigation of two inter-connected archaeological sites in the Beheira region. Excavations at ancient Metelis (Kom el-Ahmer, the second largest site in the western Delta) have indicated that this area would have once been well-connected and suitable for significant levels of commerce and trade. The project was supported by the Egypt Exploration Society in 2015 and 2017.

The Interdisciplinary Project of Padua University in collaboration with different institutions is aiming to study and preserve the two connected sites of Kom al-Ahmer and Kom Wasit in Beheira Province. Since 2012, the international team is working side by side with Egyptian colleagues in order to have better understanding of the region. In 2017, the work seasons at the Koms saw the team focusing on new excavations units as well as consolidating work on former ones. At Kom Wasit, the investigation of the mudbrick enclouser wall of the probable temple resumed with the exposure of a part of the southern enclosure wall, where several amulets of different gods, 7th century BC Greek pottery and bronze cobras statutes were recovered. On the eastern part of the site, the remains of a second Hellenistic house were fully excavated, and the material culture recovered provides insight on the statue and religious beliefs of its occupiers. While, on the southern fringe, work continued at the tholos baths with an extension to record the drainage system and later re-usage as a necropolis. In the same time, more auger holes were drilled on and between the sites to obtain further data. At the laboratory, pottery and glass were studied and all found coins have been cleaned and partly studied.

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Left, Kufti working on site; Right, drill auger process


Team excavating a tower house

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Left, Ole Herslund excavating a tower house; Right, Nunzia Larosa working at Kom Wasit


Cleaning Egyptian amphorae after discovery