September 4, 2013

Tomb of Ramses VI

Tomb of Ramses VI
This tomb was started by Ramses V and was usurped by his successor. It has three entrance corridors, two chambers, a further two corridors, one after the other in a straight line, leading to the ante-chamber and the tomb chamber. The wall representations are carried out in painted low relief. The standard of craftsmanship is not high, but the tomb chamber has one of the most important ceilings in the Valley of the Kings. In fact, names and mottoes in Coptic and Greek show that this ‘Golden Hall’ was an attraction from the first century AD.

Tomb of Ramses VI
On each side of the first corridor (i) are representations of the deceased standing before Ra-Harakhte (a) and Osiris (b). On the right-hand wall of the second corridor (c) the barge of the Sun-god travels through the different hours of the night, watched over by Osiris, at (d). The third corridor (3) has the figure of the Sky- goddess Nut extending across the roof, through the ante-chamber (4) and ends in chamber (5). A scene, at (e) shows Osiris under a canopy.

Chamber (5) is supported by four pillars, on each of which the pharaoh is shown making offerings to the deities. On the rear walls (f) and (g) arc fine representations of the enthroned Osiris; the deceased burns incense before him. The sloping passage to the rear is guarded by sacred winged snakes.

Tomb of Ramses VI
Deeper and deeper through the different caverns of the underworld we travel, as we pass through corridor (6), which has a fine representation, at (h), of the fourth hour of the night. Protective and sacred emblems safeguard the barge of the Sun-god in the sloping corridor (7), which leads to the ante-chamber. On the right-hand wall (i), the deceased stands with Maat, goddess of Truth; on the left-hand wall (j) are sacred texts.

The tomb chamber (9), which is decorated throughout and is well preserved, has a vaulted ceiling and the smashed sarcophagus at its centre. The right-hand wall (k) has a symbolic representation of the Sun-god represented in the form of a beetle with a ram’s head. The boat in which he travels is worshipped by two has, human-headed birds, and by the souls of Kheper and Atum. Above this scene is the goddess Nut, with upstretched arms; below are the condemned, beheaded.

Tomb of Ramses VI
Dark blue and gold predominate on the ceiling, where the goddess Nut is twice depicted along its entire length, in a graceful semi-circle with backs touching. She represents the morning and the evening skies. Her elongated body curves to touch the earth with finger and toe, head to the west and loins to the east. The astrological representations include the different signs of the Egyptian zodiac: lion, serpent, balances, scorpion, archer and goat; the crab, twins, bull, ram, fishes and water carrier. There are also ships containing controllers of the different sections of the day and divisions of the half year.

Tomb of Ramses VI
In the niche to the rear (1), the barge of the Sun-god is held aloft by upstretched arms.

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