Egypt: The Tomb of Ramesses IX, Valley of the Kings, Egypt

The Tomb of Ramesses IX, Valley of the Kings, Egypt

by Jimmy Dunn writing as Mark Andrews

The Tomb of Ramesses IX in the Valley of the Kings in Luxor, Egypt

The tomb of Ramesses IX (KV 6) is the first tomb one encounters within the modern entrance to the Valley of the Kings. It is a rather simplistic tomb in most respects, though the art work is interesting. John Gardner Wilkinson said of the artwork:

"The features of the king are peculiar, and from the form of the nose, so very unlike that of the usual Egyptian face, it becomes very probable that their sculptures actually offer portraits..."

The tomb has stood open since antiquity, and was visited by many ancient tourists, including 46 who left inscriptions within the tomb. This tomb was apparently explored by Henry Salt, who collected some of the funerary equipment which is now in his collection at the British Museum. In 1888, the sepulchre was cleared by George Daressy.

Drawings in  The Tomb of Ramesses IX in the West Bank of Luxor

Entrance is made to the tomb down a corridor with steps on either side, which then connects to the first true corridor with two annexes on either side. However, one of the annexes was never completed. This is followed by a second and third corridor, prior to reaching a vestibule. Note the absence of a ritual shaft. The vestibule opens into a four pillared hall, and then a very short corridor which leads to the burial chamber with no annexes. It is possible that the burial chamber was originally meant to be another corridor, as it is very small, but was converted because of the kings death. An unusual feature of the burial chamber is a two tiered pit in the floor. No sarcophagus has ever been found.

Floor Map of The Tomb of Ramesses the 9th

Decorations inside The Tomb of Ramesses IX in Luxor

The decorative theme for this tomb begins with the king's adoration of the sun disk, accompanied by Isis and Nephthys on the lintel over the entrance. Variations of this are also found on the door lintels of the second and third corridors. The art in this tomb is similar to that of Ramesses VI, though here, the first two corridors have passages from the Litanies of Re, rather than the Book of Gates. It appears that only decorative theme of the first corridor was completed during Ramesses IX's lifetime, with the remainder of the artwork completed with much less care and skill after his death.

Picture inside the Tomb of  Ramesses IX in Egypt

In the second and third corridors, in addition to the Litanies of Re, there are also passages from the Book of the Dead, the Book of Caverns, and in the last part, the Book of Amduat. Probably due not only to the changing concept of the Afterlife, but also the lack of space, most of the texts are abbreviated, and the Book of Gates does not show up at all. There are figures of two priests to either side of the door to the pillared hall representing the Opening of the Mouth ritual. The burial chamber has a vaulted ceiling with a double representation of Nut and passages from the Book of the Day and the Book of the Night.

The body of Ramesses IX was found in the Deir el-Bahri cache in 1881, in a coffin originally prepared for the lady Neskhons, wife of Pinudjem II.

There is little in the way of funerary equipment which was discovered for this tomb. As stated above, no sarcophagus was found.

Carvings at The Tomb of Ramesses IX in the Valley of the Kings

From the Salt Collection at the British Museum:

  • Wooden shabtis

  • Figured ostraca

  • Wooden statues

  • Life size wooden "ka" figure.

Discovered by George Daressy:

  • About one hundred ostraca

  • Runners of a large wooden shrine

General Site Information

  • Structure: KV 6

  • Location: Valley of the Kings, East Valley, Thebes West Bank, Thebes

  • Owner: Rameses IX

  • Other designations: 12 [Champollion], 3e Tombeau l'est [Description], 6 [Lepsius], 9

    [Hay], L [Burton], N (?) [Pococke]

  • Site type: Tomb


  • Axis in degrees: 123.01

  • Axis orientation: Southeast

Site Location

  • Latitude: 25.44 N

  • Longitude: 32.36 E

  • Elevation: 171.481 msl

  • North: 99,614.405

  • East: 94,075.487

  • JOG map reference: NG 36-10

  • Modern governorate: Qena (Qina)

  • Ancient nome: 4th Upper Egypt

  • Surveyed by TMP: Yes


  • Maximum height: 4.61 m

  • Mininum width: 0.81 m

  • Maximum width: 8.55 m

  • Total length: 105.02 m

  • Total area: 396.41 m

  • Total volume: 1076.35 m

Additional Tomb Information

  • Entrance location: Base of sloping hill

  • Owner type: King

  • Entrance type: Ramp

  • Interior layout: Corridors and chambers

  • Axis type: Straight


  • Grafitti

  • Painting

  • Sunk relief

Categories of Objects Recovered

  • Sculpture

  • Tomb equipment

  • Transport

  • Written documents


History of Exploration

  • Pococke, Richard (1737-1738): Mapping/planning

  • Salt, Henry (1817): Excavation

  • Wilkinson, John Gardner (1824): Visit

  • Hay, Robert (1824): Mapping/planning

  • Burton, James (1825): Mapping/planning

  • Franco-Tuscan Expedition (1828-1829): Epigraphy

  • Daressy, Georges (1888): Excavation (conducted for the Service des Antiquits)






Reference Number

Complete Valley of the Kings, The (Tombs and Treasures of Egypt's Greatest Pharaohs)

Reeves, Nicholas; Wilkinson, Richard H.


Thames and Hudson Ltd

IBSN 0-500-05080-5

Guide to the Valley of the Kings

Siliotti, Alberto


Barnes & Noble Books

ISBN 0-7607-0483-x

Valley of the Kings

Weeks, Kent R.



ISBN 1-5866-3295-7

Valley of the Kings

Heyden, A. Van Der

Al Ahram/Elsevier


Last Updated: June 20th, 2011