TT1 (Tomb of Sennedjem)

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The Theban Tomb, designated as TT1, is located in Deir el-Medina, part of the Theban Necropolis, on the west bank of the Nile, opposite to Luxor. It is the burial place of the ancient Egyptian official, Sennedjem and his family. Sennedjem lived during the 19th Dynasty, under the reign of Pharaoh Sethy I and the first years of Ramesses II. He was buried here, probably around year 11 of the reign of Ramesses.

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Located in the hills opposite to the worker's village of Deir el-Medina to the west ofWaset (Thebes, modern Luxor).

The tomb was found in 1886 and was undisturbed. It contained over 20 burials, most of them certainly belonging to family members of Sennedjem. Having escaped being plundered in antiquity, it offers a rare glimpse into the lives and deaths of the town people. The tomb of Sennedjem can be considered as a collective, because at least three generations of the same family were united in the same chamber.


circa 1280 BCE

The tomb was discovered in January 31, 1886 by Egyptian workers from Qurna. On February 1st, Maspéro (accompanied by Bouriant and a Catalan diplomat, Edouardo Toda) set foot on the terrain, and the tomb was entered the day after. At the time of discovery the tomb site presented a miserable aspect.

Tomb Layout

circa 1280 BCE

The architectural layout of the tomb consisted of a superstructure: a courtyard topped by pyramidions, as well as a subterranean structure. A shaft that descends 6 meters under the ground leads to the underground complex composed of four chambers. All chambers are decorated with scenes from the Book of the Dead.


circa 1280 BCE

The courtyard (see plan) of the tomb is rectangular in shape, measuring 12.35 meters wide and 9.40 meters deep. Because of its location on a slope, its east side rests against an embankment, maintained by a 2 meters high wall of quarried stones

Subterranean Burial Complex

circa 1280 BCE

Burial Chamber
The burial chamber measuring 5.12 by 2.61 meters with its vaulted ceiling of 2.40 meters is completely decorated; a total surface area of about 40 square meters.

The tomb inscriptions describe Sennedjem as "servant in the place of truth", which turned out to be a common title for the workers and the artisans who built and decorated the royal tombs in the nearby Valley of the Kings. The decorations in the tomb of Sennedjem are devoted largely devoted to the religious and mythological themes.


circa 1280 BCE

It contained over 20 burials, most of them certainly belonging to family members of Sennedjem.

There were actually no less than twenty bodies discovered. Nine among them possessed very beautiful anthropoid, simple or double coffins, finely painted and varnished. They belonged to Sennedjem, his wife Iyneferti, his son Khonsu and his wife Tamaket; also of his other children: Parahotep, Taashsen, Ramose, Isis and finally, that of a small girl named Hathor.

Eleven others did not have coffins. It is likely that these were the family's members not having had enough fortune to provide for themselves something other than shrouds and strips of fabric and to whom the head of the family offered to share his burial.

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