The Naos of the Decades Reconstituted
Proceedings of the 1st Egyptological conference of the Patriarchate of Alexandria : 6th May 2011
In 1999, underwater excavation by the European Institute of Underwater Archaeology (IEASM), in the bay of Abukir brought light new fragments of a naos known since the early 19th century as the Louvre Calendar. It was later called The Naos of Decades because of the very particular decoration of its outside surfaces which were separated into frames, one for each group of ten days of the ancient Egyptian year. This new discovery was the third one in the series of archaeological episodes which allowed in the course of over two centuries to nearly complete the reconstituting of the monuments: the roof of this naps was found in 1777 on land and belongs to the Louvre Museum; the base and the rear wall were found in 1940 under water in the Bay of Abukir, and our newly found items complete the major part of the lateral surfaces. Despite their stay of over one thousand years in salty water, the inscriptions preserved fairly well on the new items contradict the previously assumed distribution of the decades on the walls, and above all, shed an entirely new light on the interpretation of this important monument.