Minister of State for Antiquities Zahi Hawass today unveiled King Khufu’s second solar boat to hundreds of foreign and Egyptian journalists at the Giza Plateau. Today, after the completion of a comprehensive study, the limestone blocks, consisting of 41 panels that have covered the boat pit for 4,500 years, were removed and the boat’s wooden beams extracted one by one to a special warehouse in order to be reassembled as it would have looked in ancient times.
The boats werre discovered in 1954 by during cleaning at the southern side of Khufu’s Great Pyramid. One was removed from the pit to a nearby warehouse where restorers spent more than 20 years reassembling it. It is now exhibited at the Khufu Solar Boat Museum near to the Great Pyramid.
The second solar boat remained sealed in its pit until 1987 when the National Geographic Society examined it in association with the Egyptian Office for Historical Monuments.
In collaboration with the Japanese government, a Japanese scientific and archaeological team from Waseda University offered a grant of $10 million to lift the boat out of the pit, restore and reassemble it and exhibit it beside its twin.
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See videos of first solar boat.