21-X-5 Kulb East/Dakki

The east (here south) bank near Kulb had several sites of this period, variously identified as ‘C-Group’ or ‘Kerma’. This area is of some interest as the location of the southernmost known Egyptian inscriptions of the Old Kingdom, three graffiti left by ‘prospectors’, recorded by the East German Epigraphic Survey (site 21-X-1/1-3, renumbered as 21-X-12*). This site was one of three small cemeteries in close proximity. Test excavations were carried out by A.J. Mills in February 1968, while the location remains unflooded today. Registered as a ‘C-Group/Kerma’ site, it is notable for the presence of some fragmentary stone stelae, characteristic of ‘Early Kerma’ burials. While otherwise entirely robbed out, examples of the characteristically deep grave shafts of this period were found here. Other graves included examples datable to the Middle Kerma period. Classic Kerma burials were excavated in the cemetery 21-X-4 which lay just to the south; the two sites reflecting a long-term presence at this location.

Cemetery 21-X-5 in foreground, before excavation; Kerma cemetery 21-X-4 behind, under excavation (February 1968)
21-X-5, Pottery from grave 4
21-X-5 Sandstone ‘stele’ fragments from robbed Early Kerma grave