Archaeologists said on Thursday they had uncovered a large ancient pharaonic city that had lain unseen for centuries near some of Egypt’s best known monuments. The city was built more than 3,400 years ago during the opulent reign of Amenhotep III, one of Egypt’s most powerful pharaohs, the Egyptian archaeologist overseeing the excavations, Zahi Hawass, said. The team began searching for a mortuary temple near Luxor in September, but within weeks found mud brick formations in every direction, Zahi Hawass said in a statement. They unearthed the well-preserved city that had almost complete walls and rooms filled with tools of daily life along with rings, scarabs, coloured pottery vessels and mud bricks bearing seals of Amenhotep’s cartouche. “The city’s streets are flanked by houses … some of their walls are up to three metres high,” Hawass said. The excavations lie on the West Bank of Luxor near the Colossi of Memnon, Medinet Habu and the Ramesseum, or mortuary temple of King Ramses II, not far from the Valley of the Kings.