Archaeologists in Egypt have discovered a secret tunnel underneath Taposiris Magna, a temple dedicated to Osiris, the god of death.
The tunnel was discovered by the Dominican-Egyptian archaeological mission of the University of San Domingo, headed by Kathleen Martins. They found the tunnel, which was carved into rock some 40 feet underground. The tunnel stretches approximately 4,300 feet in length and rises 6 feet in height.
Martins described the tunnel as an “engineering miracle” in the Egyptian Ministry of Tourism and Antiquities’s announcement of the find.
Since 2002, Martins has been working on excavations in Taporsis Magna. Some believe that, behind the temple, Cleopatra and her lover Marc Antony may be buried in a necropolis.
In 2021, Martins’s team discovered 16 burial chambers and two mummies fitted with golden tongues, but thus far, the remains of Cleopatra and Marc Antony remain unfound.
The tunnel remained undiscovered for so long because it was partly submerged underwater. After being built, a series of at least 23 earthquakes hit the Egyptian coast between 320 CE and 1303 CE, leading to the partial collapse of the temple and the tunnel. Sections of both were left underwater for a time.
Archaeologists have begun excavating the mud deposits in and around the temple, and have thus far found two alabaster busts, coins with the images and names of Queen Cleopatra and Alexander the Great, headless statues, statues of the goddess Isis, and a variety of ceramic wares.