KV 39 (Amenhetep I (?))



General Site Information
Structure: KV 39
Location: Valley of the Kings, East Valley, Thebes West Bank, Thebes
Owner: Amenhetep I (?)
Other designations: 235 [Carter]
Site type: Tomb


KV 39 is located at the head of a water course on the plateau above and to the south of KV 34. The entryway stairway (A) is cut in the side of the hill below al Qurn followed by a sloping corridor (B1) that has been enlarged to the south at its lower end (B1a). Beyond this corridor, a rectangular chamber (C1) extends to the north of the axis. There is a stepped descent cut on the axis in the floor at the south end of this chamber. Two other descending corridors open off the south extension B1a. One descends southwards from a stairwell in the floor and continues as a rough cut sloping corridor (B3) to another stairwell (C4) leading to a rectangular burial chamber (J2) extending to the east with a pit in the floor beneath the rear wall. The other set of passages extends on a west-east axis parallel to the entrance. A sloping corridor (B2) descends to a stairwell (C2) followed by a second corridor ( D1) and stairwell (C3), a short corridor (D2) and a low rectangular burial chamber (J1).

Weigall's description of the tomb suggests that some decoration remained intact at the time of his entry. All traces of decoration were obliterated by the time Rose cleared the tomb. Weigall based his belief that the tomb belonged to Amenhetep I on perceived similarities of position between KV 39 and that described for Amenhetep I's tomb in the tomb robbery papyri.

Noteworthy features

The tomb descends in three different directions on three axes. Each axis consists of a series of corridors and two at least end in rectangular chambers.

Site History
There appear to have been three construction phases, suggested by differences in architectural typology and the orientation of component groups. Entryway A, corridor B1, and chamber C1 and its descent would have been cut first, and suggest a date in the first half of Dynasty 18. Following a southward extension at the end of the corridor B1, two other complexes of corridors and stairs leading to burial chambers were cut to the south and to the east, although it is not certain in which order these were done.

This site was used during the following period(s):

New Kingdom, Dynasty 18 (Date assigned by architectural typology)

History of Exploration
Andraos, Boutros (1900): Discovery
Andraos, Boutros (1900): Excavation
Macarios, C. (1900): Discovery
Macarios, C. (1900): Excavation
Carter, Howard (1916): Visit
Rose, John (1989, 1991-1994): Excavation
Buckley, Ian (2001-): Excavation
Buckley, Ian (2001-): Mapping/planning

 -  Site condition: The upper components of the tomb are cut in poor quality shale and preserve less of their original surfaces. The lower corridors and chambers are cut in better limestone, although several large cracks or fissures have led to structural damage as rock has fallen away. The lower chambers to the east were partly filled with debris by the 1994 floods, although they are still accessible. The southern corridors and chamber were completely filled up to descent B1a..




Printable Tomb Drawings


Axis in degrees: 248.99
Axis orientation: West

Site Location
Latitude: 25.44 N
Longitude: 32.36 E
Elevation: 249.42 msl
North: 99,122.451
East: 94,127.795
JOG map reference: NG 36-10
Modern governorate: Qena (Qina)
Ancient nome: 4th Upper Egypt

Maximum height: 4.94 m
Minimum width: 0 m
Maximum width: 3.92 m
Total length: 101.09 m
Total area: 193.69 m²
Total volume: 445.1 m³

Additional Tomb Information
Entrance location: Hillside
Owner type: Unknown, possibly royal
Entrance type: Staircase
Interior layout: Corridors and chambers
Axis type: Bent

Categories of Objects Recovered
Architectural elements
Human mummies
Mummy trappings
Religious objects
Tomb equipment
Written documents