The tomb of Gua

Gua lived during the Middle Kingdom (about 2040-1750 BC) and was buried at Deir el-Bersha in Middle Egypt. This cemetery was one of the major provincial cemeteries of the late First Intermediate period (about 2160-2040 BC) and Middle Kingdom. Gua's tomb consisted of an undecorated chamber and was located at the base of a shaft sunk in front of the tomb of Djehutyhotep, a local governor. The position of Gua's tomb, and his title of 'Chief Physician', suggest that he was an important figure in the court of Djehutyhotep.

A number of tombs in the area were excavated by John Daressy in the 1890s, but after his departure, clandestine excavations took place, and one of the tombs discovered was that of Gua. The objects were then purchased by E.A.T. Wallis Budge. The chamber contained his two coffins and other objects, including an ivory head rest, servant models and a full set of canopic jars in a cedar chest. The presence of this expensive imported wood in the funerary equipment suggests that Gua was quite a wealthy man. Also of interest are his canopic jars, which are among the earliest in The British Museum collection. Gua's coffins are decorated with the Book of Two Ways, and the Coffin Texts, both of which are funerary texts of the Middle Kingdom.

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