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Mahmoud handing basket of earth to carrier   Mahmoud waiting

Elizabeth and Violaine looking at her square
At Elizabeth’s squares by the Thutmose III gateway, we have been exploring the extent of the enclosure wall that runs north and south from the gate. The pickman Mahmoud stands in the newer trench where he is uncovering the wall. You’ll note that Mahmoud hands off a basket of earth to a carrier and then he stands, quite still and alone, in another photo. Poor Mahmoud waits, seemingly endlessly, for the carriers to return from the dump site. A little ways away Elizabeth contemplates her first square where deep walls have emerged beneath the lowest courses of the great mid-18th Dynasty (ca. 1479 B.C.) enclosure.
Ceramic duck head from Wendy's square
Wendy’s square has rendered up so many gifts already, and here is another. This is a ceramic duck head and neck, beautifully modeled. We are not sure what type of object this came from as yet, but it is certainly a fine work.
Yasmin's square
Yasmin has opened her square west of the first court of the Temple. So far she is working in upper levels that are composed of old fill and collapse from the wall. Nonetheless she carefully records in her notebook everything she encounters.
Elaine and her crew led by Abdel Aziz   Sloping surface at Scott's lower square
Elaine and her crew led by Abdel Aziz, gufti and son of Reis Farouk, painstakingly trowel in search of the hard plastered surface that covers the slope down to the lake. This surface is extremely hard packed and highly identifiable, but it is also easy to cut through, so the work has been quite intense. A fine view of the sloping surface can be seen at Scott’s lower square as well.
Scott in his upper trench
In his upper trench, Scott works to draw the complicated group of mud brick walls. This trench has a Late Period pit in the lower right (northeast) corner, two New Kingdom storage bins, and a wall of the Second Intermediate Period in the upper left (southwest) corner. All this in a rather tight space.
Fatma’s new square   Fatma’s new square
Fatma’s new square has become so interesting. A series of walls on the eastern side appeared to house an oven or kiln, and this is at a level beneath the Late Period also attested here. Now there are earlier walls here as well, and soon we will remove the oven area and explore the new walls. The pottery now looks New Kingdom by the way.
Mud packed and plastered surface behind the lake

Mud packed and plastered surface behind the lake   Mud packed and plastered surface behind the lake
Our mud packed and plastered surface behind the lake has reached over 45 meters in length, and the photos show that it does indeed follow the slope down toward the lake. This would not be the lake revetment itself but would perhaps connect to it; nonetheless this is clearly a prepared surface around the lake designed for the temple, probably in the mid-18th Dynasty according to the pottery used as strengthener for the mud work.

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