The upper part of the statue of Ramesses II uncovered 

A team of researchers led by Basem Gehad of Supreme Council of Antiquities of Egypt and Yvona Trnka-Amrhein of University of Colorado has uncovered the upper part of the statue of King Ramses II in the Ashmunin region in Minya Governorate. This part of the statue was missing since the lower part of the statue was discovered about a century ago in 1930 by the German archaeologist Günther Roeder.  

The discovered part is made of limestone and is about 3.80 meters high. It depicts King Ramesses II sitting wearing a double crown and a headdress topped with a royal cobra. The upper part of the statue’s back column also shows hieroglyphic writings of titles to glorify the king, indicating that the size of the statue when its lower part is installed may reach about 7 meters. 

Study of the discovered upper part of the statue has confirmed that it was a continuation of the lower part that was discovered earlier in 1930.  

Ramesses II was an Egyptian pharaoh. He was the third ruler of the Nineteenth Dynasty and is regarded as the greatest, most celebrated, and most powerful pharaoh of the New Kingdom hence often referred as Ramesses the Great.

Excavation in the Ashmunin region started last year with an aim to uncover the religious centre of the city of Ashmunin during the New Kingdom until the Roman era, which includes several temples, including a temple for King Ramesses II. The city of Ashmunin was known in ancient Egypt as Khemnu, meaning the City of the Eight, as it was the seat of the Egyptian cult of Thamun. It was known in the Greco-Roman era as Hermopolis Magna, and it was a centre for the worship of the god Djehuti and the capital of the fifteenth region.  



  1. The Ministry of Tourism and Antiquities. Press statement – Uncovering the upper part of a statue of King Ramesses II in Al-Ashmunin, Minya Governorate. Posted 4 March 2024.   


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