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A project of the American Research Center in Egypt
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Entrance to QV15
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Chamber B

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A large, undecorated rectangular chamber that lies parallel to the tomb's shaft entrance. A break in the western wall provides access to the QV 16. It is uncertain whether this break was intentional or natural.


Cutting finished

Chamber C

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A square and undecorated side chamber that lies east of chamber B. It has a small side chamber to the southeast.


Cutting finished
Damaged structurally

Side chamber Ca

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A small, square undecorated side chamber that lies southeast of Chamber C. A pit in the southeast corner leads to lower side chamber Caa.

Architectural Features



Cutting finished

Side chamber Caa

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A small irregular, undecorated side chamber that is accessed via a pit in the southeastern corner of side chamber Ca.


Cutting finished



QV 15 lies on the south side of the main Wadi, on the upper slope of a small ridge. QV15 and QV 16 are connected by a long passage, creating one large continuous subterranean space. QV 15 is the larger of the two with one large chamber (B), a smaller chamber (C) that lies to the east of chamber (B), a small side chamber (Ca), as well as a lower shaft and side chamber (Caa). The tomb has a typical shaft entrance (A) with modern masonry surround. 

The tomb dates to the 18th Dynasty and as with other tombs from this period, is undecorated. Elizabeth Thomas considered both tombs to be "tandem" in their layout, indicating that consecutive chambers make up the tomb. She notes the presence of small pits 2m deep in both QV 15 and QV 16. Thomas suggested that QV 15 may have been examined by Ernesto Schiaparelli (1903-1905), since the fill is more irregular than usual, with at least one apparent localized excavation. The tomb was last excavated by the Franco-Egyptian Mission in 1987 and was cleared by the CNRS and SCA in 2008. 

Noteworthy features:

QV15 and QV 16 are connected by a long passage, creating one large continuous subterranean space.

Site History

QV 15 was constructed in the 18th Dynasty. Based on the archaeological material recovered by the Franco-Egyptian Mission, it was reused during the Late and Roman periods.


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

New Kingdom
Dynasty 18
Late Period
Graeco-Roman Era
Roman Period


1903 (?): Excavation
Italian Archaeological Expedition
1959-1960: Documentation
Thomas, Elizabeth
1981: Mapping/planning
Theban Mapping Project
1987: Publication, Conservation, Excavation
Franco Egyptian Mission
2006-2008: Survey and Documentation
Getty Conservation Institute (GCI) and the Supreme Council of Antiquities (SCA)
2008: Tomb clearance
Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique (CNRS) and the Supreme Council of Antiquities (SCA)


Conservation History

Previous efforts to stabilize loose rock with mortar was evident at the time of the GCI-SCA assessment in 2006-2008.

Site Condition

According to the GCI-SCA, the entrance to QV 15 is cut into shale lying below a bed of highly fractured, less clay-rich marl. Fracturing of the ceiling and localized rock loss are evident throughout the tomb. Blackening of some of the rock surface is also present, indicative of a fire. Trash littered the chamber floor. The lower shaft in the rear of QV 15 is host to a large community of bats, estimated at around 100 in February 2008. A similar number were present in December 2009. Droppings are visible throughout the tomb. The inherent weakness of the rock and its susceptibility to moisture have led to rock fracturing and localized loss. 


Geography and Geology of the Valley of the Queens and Western Wadis

The Valley of the Queens and the Western Wadis are made up of numerous valleys spread out over a vast space of desert, each containing tombs for the New Kingdom queens and other royal family members. The poor quality rock has led to damage in several tombs after suffering from earthquakes and floods.


CNRS mission report: Centre national de la recherche scientifique (France). Rapport d'activité 1987-1988 URA no. 1064, 1987-1988.

Demas, Martha and Neville Agnew (eds). Valley of the Queens. Assessment Report. Los Angeles: The Getty Conservation Institute, 2012, 2016. Two vols.

Macke, André, Christiane Macke-Ribet, Christian Leblanc, and Jacques Connan. Ta set neferou: une necropole de Thebes-Ouest et son histoire: momification, chimie des baumes, anthropologie, paléopathologie. Vol. 5. Cairo: Nubar Printing House, 2002.