The Egyptian Ministry of Culture on Thursday announced the discovery of the upper part of a red granite statue of a famed Egyptian pharaoh on the west bank of Luxor, located some 700 km south of Cairo. The statue is thought to be roughly 3400 years old.
In a statement, Egypt's Supreme Council for Antiquities (SCA) attributed the statue to Amenhotep III (1372 – 1410 BC), noting that it had probably been one of a pair of statues made of red granite depicting the king next to the falcon goddess Ra Hor Akhti.
The SCA added that King Amenhotep III had been depicted in numerous statues in which he appears with various ancient Egyptian deities, such as that featuring the gods Amun-Ra, Ra Hor Akhty, Bastet and Sobek currently housed in the Luxor Museum.
Amenhotep III was the father of Amenhotep IV, or Akhenaten, known for the monotheistic faith he promulgated along with Queen Ty, who did not herself boast royal ancestry but whose parents had assumed high positions of state.
Amenhotep III was the seventh pharaoh of the 18th Dynasty, ruling from 1391 BC to 1353 BC. He contributed to the construction of the Temple of Amun, Karnak's main temple, by building the temple's third edifice.