The Hypostyle Hall (see photograph, view from the first court) is practically clear of sand and debris and most of the men have been moved to the Sanctuary area. There I was disappointed to notice that all the blue colour on the king’s wig, which we had noted last year before we covered it up, has disappeared during the summer.
Some brick walls and pillars were found at a low level, in the south east corner of the Hypostyle, prove to be those of small, rectangular storage receptacles, similar to those already found in E.14.2, and are built over debris and have stone foundations.
Late this afternoon, having planned and photographed them, we began to move them and immediately raised about two thirds of the upper part of a stela (see photograph below), which shows a very spirited figure of Sethos I in the act of smiting a group of captives. It is most unfortunate that so much is missing, for the drawing is well done and this would have been one of our best finds. This fragment does not belong, apparently, to the other stela of Sethos I found a few days ago. On the north side of the Hypostyle we found a fragment of a stela incised in hieratic and semi-hieratic characters. A date, “year 3, 3rd. month of Shomu, day 28” is preserved, but no royal name. This fragment was found on a trough-like piece of stone built into the floor. Close by is another similar object, and another has been found loose in the debris. It is possible that these were the bases on which the stelae were stood.
Most of the men are working in and around the Sanctuary, which has on either side a small room, while the southern one has a very narrow room or passage on its south side. In both the northern and souther rooms the lintels were still in position, but the northern one was thin and cracked and had to be removed: the northern one, though battered, is strong and solid and is in no danger of falling.
In the Sanctuary itself we have cleared away most of the sand and are down to the low-lying level of occuppation debris. No objects have been found there so far, but we have laid bare the large and well-built basis of the boat shrine.
We are also beginning to descend in the small court between the Hypostyle and the Sanctuary, and have been successful in restoring a number of blocks to their original positions. The quality of the reliefs, where preserved, in this part of the Temple is surprisingly good, but they are executed in plaster over very bad quality stone and much damage has occurred to them.
Fragment of stela incised in hieratic characters
Object cards of the objects found