tDAR Logo tDAR digital antiquity

The Elite Meroitic Necropolis of Sai Island Part I: Mortuary Interpretations

Author(s): Vincent Francigny

Year: 2017

» Downloads & Basic Metadata

Summary

Sai Island, located in northern Sudan between the 2nd and 3rd Nile cataracts, boasts a rich archaeological history spanning from the Paleolithic to modern times. Recent archaeological excavations conducted by the French Unit of the National Corporation for Antiquities and Museums have focused on a small elite Meroitic necropolis (300BC-350AD). Similar to other fringe elite Meroitic cemeteries such as Sedeinga, the Sai Island cemetery features pyramid mortuary structures with descendaries leading into burial chambers located under the pyramid structures. While burial chambers appear to have been only used for adults, Meroitic elite subadult burials have been located within the walls of the pyramid structures. Complicating the archaeological interpretation are Christian subadult burials (600-1500 AD) that were interred in the descendaries, later Ottoman burials (1820-1881) interred throughout the necropolis, and significant comingling due to looting. Here we present the initial interpretations of the mortuary complex and what it has revealed about the Meroitic elite of Sai Island.


This Resource is Part of the Following Collections


Cite this Record

The Elite Meroitic Necropolis of Sai Island Part I: Mortuary Interpretations. Vincent Francigny. Presented at The 81st Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, Vancouver, British Columbia. 2017 ( tDAR id: 429355)


Keywords

Geographic Keywords
AFRICA


Spatial Coverage

min long: -18.809; min lat: -38.823 ; max long: 53.262; max lat: 38.823 ;

Record Identifiers

Abstract Id(s): 16807

Arizona State University The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation National Science Foundation National Endowment for the Humanities Society for American Archaeology Archaeological Institute of America