Archaeologists uncover ancient beer brewery at Egypt funeral site

Feb. 15 (UPI) — A group of archaeologists say they have made quite the discovery — a large, ancient Egyptian brewery that could produce almost 6,000 gallons of beer when it was up and running 5,000 years ago.

The brewery was uncovered in southern Egypt at North Abydos by a joint team of Egyptian and U.S.-based archaeologists, according to a Facebook post from Egypt’s Ministry of Tourism and Antiquities.

Mostafa Waziry, secretary-general of Egypt’s Supreme Council of Antiquities, said the brewery dates back to the era of King Narmer, who ruled more than 5,000 years ago and founded the First Dynasty and unified Upper and Lower Egypt.

Waziry said it was the oldest high-production brewery in the world and was located at a larger ancient funeral site.

Waziry added that the facility had eight large areas for beer production and each sector contained about 40 clay pots arranged in two rows. brewers used a mix of grains and water and heated it in vats, the experts said, where each basin was “held in place by levers made of clay placed vertically in the form of rings.”

The archaeologists say the beer was likely used for royal rituals and sacrificial rites that occurred at the old funeral site.

British archaeologists actually learned of the brewery’s existence in the early 1900s, but they were never able to determine its exact location.

In the online journal Abydos Archaeology, New York University researcher Matthew Adams said such a mass production brewery was probably unlike any other. He and Princeton University researcher Deborah Vischak started investigating the buried brewery in 2018.

“[It] may have been built in this place specifically to supply the royal rituals that were taking place inside the funeral facilities of the kings of Egypt,” he said, according to the Egyptian ministry’s statement.

The archaeologists noted that the brewery was “an important component of a new system of royal expression at a critical moment in Egypt’s history, along with the construction of monumental tombs and ritual enclosures, the sacrificial burial of courtiers and retainers, and in one case the burial of an entire fleet of boats.”

(function(d, s, id) {var js, fjs = d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0];if (d.getElementById(id)) return;js = d.createElement(s); = id;js.src=”″;fjs.parentNode.insertBefore(js, fjs);}(document, ‘script’, ‘facebook-jssdk’));
window.twttr = (function (d,s,id) {var t, js, fjs = d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0];if (d.getElementById(id)) return; js=d.createElement(s);;js.src=””; fjs.parentNode.insertBefore(js, fjs);return window.twttr || (t = { _e: [], ready: function(f){ t._e.push(f) } });}(document, “script”, “twitter-wjs”));

Read MoreArchaeologists uncover ancient beer brewery at Egypt funeral site