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Egypt in the Old Kingdom
Relief from the mastaba of Werirenptah
Close to the pyramids were mortuary temples surrounded by large cemeteries of mastaba tombs for the burials of high officials and tombs cut out of the rock for minor family members, courtiers, minor officials and priests.
A mastaba is a type of free-standing tomb used for both royal and private burials. They are rectangular in plan, with the sides sloping in and a flat-topped mud-brick or stone superstructure containing offering chambers, all placed over a shaft leading to a subterranean burial chamber.
This example belonged to Werirenptah, a man who was a middle-ranking official, and who held the title of 'priest of Re and Hathor in the sun-temple of [King] Neferirkare'. Such priests were not those who carried out the daily rituals, but officials who had been favoured by the king by being allowed to receive some of the revenues from that temple.
mastaba consists of a
main wall with two