S.Arabia discovers ancient Pharaonic inscriptions

Mon Nov 8, 2010 10:37am EST
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JEDDAH (Reuters) - Saudi Arabia has discovered its first hieroglyphic inscriptions mentioning an Egyptian pharaoh dating back more than 3,000 years on a rock near the northern city of Tabuk, state media reported.

The inscriptions, which bore the name of Pharoah Ramses III, dated back to the 12th century BC and amounted to the first hieroglyphic discovery in the desert kingdom.

Ramses III ruled ancient Egypt from 1192 BC to 1160 BC, state news agency SPA said late Sunday.

The discovery was made in July at the Tayma oasis, which archaeologists now say was an important land route between the western coast of Arabia and Egypt's Nile Valley.

Over the past few years Saudi Arabia has been increasing efforts to promote cultural and archeological finds. Earlier this year the government showcased some of its discoveries at the Louvre museum in Paris.

(Reporting by Asma Alsharif; editing by Mark Heinrich)