The Tomb of Sennefer: The Vineyard Tomb of Thebes

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Tomb of Sennefer tomb painting depicting Sennefer holding a lotus flower

The Tomb of Sennefer, also known as TT96, is a notable burial site located in the Theban Necropolis on the west bank of the Nile, opposite Luxor, Egypt. Sennefer was a high-ranking official during the reign of Pharaoh Amenhotep II in the 18th Dynasty (around 1427–1401 BCE). He held the title of "Mayor of Thebes" and was also known as "Overseer of the Granaries and Fields, Gardens, and Cattle of Amun."

The tomb is renowned for its unique architectural layout, which includes a combination of a rock-cut chapel and a subterranean burial chamber. Walking down into the burial chamber is challenging and in many of the areas, you can't stand up fully. 

The entrance to the Tomb of Sennefer featuring a rock tunnel


Tomb of Sennefer opening with low painted ceilings

One of the most famous aspects of the tomb is the ceiling of the burial chamber, which is adorned with a detailed and vividly painted representation of a vineyard. This depiction is symbolic, representing the abundance and fertility of the afterlife.

Tomb of Sennefer ceiling with painted grape vines

The walls of the tomb feature intricate paintings that show Sennefer in various religious and secular activities. These include offering scenes, agricultural activities, and banquets. The art in Sennefer's tomb is characterized by its use of vibrant colors and a high level of detail, reflecting the artistic style of the 18th Dynasty.

Tomb of Sennefer tomb painting depicting Sennefer on a boat with several other Egyptian deities
Tomb of Sennefer tomb painting depicting Sennefer with Anubis and Osiris

The Tomb of Sennefer is an important archaeological site that provides insights into the funerary practices, religious beliefs, and daily life of the ancient Egyptians during the New Kingdom. Its well-preserved decorations offer a glimpse into the artistic achievements of the period and the high status of its owner.

It is quite a climb to get there but if you are visiting the Theban Necropolis you must seek out the Tomb of Sennefer. 

Tomb of Sennefer tomb burial chamber with many colorful walls and ceilings


Tomb of Sennefer ceiling with vibrant colorful patterned design
Tomb of Sennefer tomb painting depicting Sennefer and a female holding a lotus flower

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