Mummified cats and scarabs found in newly discovered Egypt tombs

Egypt announced on Saturday the discovery of seven Pharaonic Age tombs near the capital, Cairo, containing dozens of mummified cats, scarabs and a crocodile.

The Minister of Antiquities Khaled El-Enany said Egyptian archaeologists had uncovered three small tombs of the New Kingdom and four small tombs of the Old Kingdom.

Inside were hundreds of objects which included mummies of scarabs, the first ever to be unearthed in the area.

Among the findings were dozens of cat mummies, 100 wooden gilded cat statues and a bronze cat statue dedicated to the goddess, Bastet.

Their number reflects the reverence ancient Egyptians showed towards felines.

Other statues depicted a lion, a cow and a falcon.

Egypt has gone to great lengths to revive its vital tourism industry, still reeling from the political turmoil that followed a 2011 popular uprising.

The Ministry of Antiquities has boosted discoveries in recent years in the hopes of bolstering tourism, a major pillar of foreign currency.

Seven Pharaonic Age tombs were discovered near Cairo. Source: Associated Press