Homepage Timeline Maps A-Z index Learning

The Rock-cut Tombs of Qau el-Kebir


The rock-cut tombs of Qau el-Kebir are the largest private monuments of the Middle Kingdom (about 2025-1700 BC). The tombs are heavily destroyed, but the finds show that the decoration and equipment of the tombs must have been of the highest quality (reliefs, statues, sarcophagi). Through the destruction and through the repetition of names (Wah-ka, Ibu) the succession of the tomb owners is still under discussion, but the larger tombs clearly date to the Twelfth Dynasty. The dating of the latest tomb is of importance for understanding developments at the end of the Twelfth Dynasty in the Egyptian provinces. At other places the rock-cut tombs of the governors disappear under Senusret III. Steckeweh 1936: 8 presented evidence (a stela with the name of Amenemhat III and the name of Wah-ka II) to date Wah-ka II (who owns the biggest tomb of all) under this king.

background information and bibliography | tombs of mayor/normarchs in the Old and Middle Kingdom | the 3D models of the tombs

map of the cemetery published by Petrie (Petrie 1930: pl.XI)


Copyright © 2001 University College London. All rights reserved.