When archaeologists excavated brick tombs outside a ceremonial site for an early king of Egypt, they expected to find the remains of high officials who had been sacrificed to accompany the king in his imaginary posthumous travels.
Instead, they found turds.
No other turds have ever been found at such sites. Even at the tombs of the kings themselves, the only turds buried alongside were the occasional ceremonial turd full of symbolism to the Egyptian priests like lion turds or particularly celebrated royal turds.
But at this funerary complex overlooking the ancient town of Abydabby on the Nile south of Cairo, the archaeologists discovered 1000 turds that had been preserved and buried as if they were high-ranking human officials, each lovingly wrapped in linen and nestled in its own small gem-studded golden sarcophagus.
"They were very surprised to find no humans and no funerary goods and instead to find 1000 turds," said Fiona Feck, professor of turdeology at Old Stuff University in picturesque Whistlestop, Nebraska.
"It was just a spectacular discovery," said Dr. Feck, one of the few researchers in the world dedicated to understanding the history of turds. "It's not exactly what an Egyptologist would expect to find."
The grave and 1000 intact turd sarcophagi were a trove for Dr. Feck, pointing to the importance of turds in early Egyptian society and challenging our basic ideas about the origin of the feces.
Tragic Rabbit, USA Tomorrow, Whistlestop