Sinai fort may hold clues to ancient Egypt defenses

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A military garrison of mud-brick and seashells unearthed in Egypt's Sinai desert may be key to finding a web of pharaonic-era defenses at the northeast gateway to ancient Egypt, archaeologists said on Thursday.

Archaeologists who discovered the 3,500-year-old garrison, where up to 50,000 soldiers could be posted in times of heightened tensions, say they hope inscriptions at Luxor's Karnak temple may serve as a guide to finding other outposts.

But knowing the location of the garrison at the ancient city of Tharu, in a formerly fertile area of Egypt where a branch of the Nile river once met the Mediterranean Sea, is key to understanding where to start looking.

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