Who Was The Last Pharaoh: King Tut's Tomb Found

Howard Carter examing King Tut
Howard Carter examing King Tut | Source

The Egyptian Boy King is one of many names King Tutankhamen has been known by. The name refers to the young age that he became King of Egypt. He was only nine years old when he became King. Although, neither of these names are what you probably know him as. He is more well known as King Tut. Tutankhamen is his proper name. He lived over thirty-three hundred years ago and was the twelfth ruler during the eighteenth dynasty from 1333 BC -1323 BC; reigning for ten years. He died at around 19 years old, which was consequentially the death of a long line of rulers in a powerful family. He died as the last heir to the throne. he reigned during the New Kingdom period, when Egypt was the superpower of the world. This was a very big responsibility on such a young man's shoulders.

Howard Carter Opening King Tut's Tomb

The moment King Tut's tomb was revealed.
The moment King Tut's tomb was revealed. | Source

Uncovering a Tomb

In November 1922, Howard Carter uncovered his tomb and all the treasures that it beheld. In fact, it is his tomb that makes him so famous not his accomplishments. Most tombs that were buried that long ago, were plundered and all the treasures were taken and sold. King Tut's tomb still remains today the most intact tomb that has ever been found. Plus there were many Egyptian artifacts, such as clothing and items with hieroglyphics.

His tomb was actually small for what was customary for a tomb of someone of his status. This may be because his death was unexpected and a grander tomb was not able to be made. The unexpectedness of his death is presumed due to the fact that he died as a teenager. They may have used a tomb that was intended for someone else.

Aside from his mummy, they have uncovered almost 600 mummies as part of the Egyptian Mummy Project. This project began in late 2003. Now they are in process of scanning each mummy through CT scan.

King Tut's Golden Mask


King Tut's Curse

On the tombs of many of the ancient Egyptian Pharaoh's is written a curse, promising death on any person who were to plunder from their remains. Although seeing as how King Tut is one of the few whose remains remained in tact with all his worldly riches, this curse did seem to scare off many of the ancient Egyptians back in the time. But were they cursed?

Many of us would laugh at the mere possibility of truly being cursed today. But is it really that unreasonable? Howard Carter who led the archaeological dig did in fact survive the taking of his remains. Although it might be important to note that Howard Carter was not the one who opened it, Lord Carnarvon was actually the one who financed the search of Egyptian legacies was found dead by blood poisoning. It was found in February 1923, by April of that same year, Carnarvon was dead. Struck by the curse, who knows? In fact, of all those who were part of the uncovering of King Tut's remains, there were six deaths. Although the molds uncovered would not kill the average person, but in high doses, some with weakened immune systems could be deadly.

Since then though, it is believed that the curse may be more biological than magical. For when tut's tomb was uncovered there was a lot of notes regarding molds that were within the tomb. Although they have not been able to recover those specimens to see if they truly were deadly, they have uncovered molds from similar mummified tombs. It is believed because Lord Carnarvon was already in very poor health, that the molds may have actually been the real cause of his death. This could also account for the other five deaths as well.

Pectoral of Amenemhat III


The Death of King Tuthanthuman

For the first time in eighty years, the modern world decided to use modern technology to discover the truth of King Tut's mysterious death. In 2005, he is one of the first mummies to ever have a full body CT scan. Previously they had believed that he had died due to a head injury and possible murder because of bone fragments that were found inside his skull during a 1968 x-ray.

These CT scans studied all 1,700 x-ray images cross sectioning his entire body from head to toe and studied by nine different doctors. All nine doctors unanimously agree that he did not die due to trauma to the head. The skull is very much in tact, and the bone fragments are most likely as a result of the original archaeological dig, not prior to death.

They did find after further investigation that he was in fact around 19 years old as earlier believed when he died. His wisdom teeth and skeleton were fully developed. he was approximately five feet six inches tall with a slight build. He was also believed to be in excellent health. The actual cause of death is unsure due to injuries found in the lower half of King Tut's body. They are unsure what was done before death and what was done from Carter's team during the original excavation.


Despite extensive information about King Tut's tomb, little is actually known about Tutankhamen himself. Although we do know that he was born sometime around 1341 BC although his parentage is unknown. Prior to DNA testing, they were unsure whether his true father was Amenophis III or Amenophis IV, they both are better known as Akhenaten. Once DNA testing was done on both King Tut and Amenophis IV, it was confirmed that Amenophis IV was in fact his father.

Since his father is in fact Amenophis IV, then there are three possibilities of who is mother is. The first one is Meketaten, which would actually be Amenophis IV daughter. This would not be completely implausible as they often tried to keep bloodlines close in royal families. She died during child birth around the same time as Tutankhamen would have been born. She would have been between 9 and 12. She most likely died due to her youthfulness. The Royal tomb at Amarna shows Meketaten's death with a newborn in the arms of a wet nurse. Some speculate that the baby was King Tut. Although, if she was the mother another possible father would be a man named Smenkhare.

The other two possibilities would be Nefertiti or his second wife Kiya. Nefertiti is the more common belief, as this is also the mother of Meketaten. Nefertiti is known to have given birth to seven children. The first six were definitely female, Meketaten was the second born in 1350 BC. The last was born in 1341 BC which is also when Tut was born. Since it is unknown whether the child was female or male or the name of the child, some believe it was King Tut himself.

Dr Hawass was one person who believed that his second wife Kiya was in fact King Tut's mother. Another known fact is that when he became King at nine years old he was married to Ankhesenpaaten who at one time was called Ankesenamen. Ankhesenpaaten was most likely his half-sister and about five years older than him. They had no surviving children; therefore, he had no surviving heirs after his death. There were two fetuses found in Tutankahmun's tomb, which have not yet been identified as his children. But as they were only fetuses, they did not survive childbirth. There close relations may have been part at fault. The older of the two fetus had spina bifida and scoliosis.

© 2010 Angela Michelle

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Comments 37 comments

phebe16 20 months ago

topic for my public speaking

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angela_michelle 5 years ago from United States Author

Well, I'm glad to see that people are still reading this! Thanks!

Hawkstryker profile image

Hawkstryker 5 years ago from England

Hi, this is an interesting hub you've got here! I sense i'm a bit late to the party here though with the last comment 15 months ago! but nonetheless a nicely written and interesting hub!

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angela_michelle 6 years ago from United States Author

The problem is no one really knows. They all just have theories, because right now, that's all there is. There are strong suspicions, but nothing conclusive. The problem with theories, is they are just theories. A good way to approach it in your report would be to say that his death is inconclusive, but here are some of the theories. Good luck on your report.

hi 6 years ago

im confused, how did King Tut really die? im doing a report for my social studies and ive looked at several different web sites and they all have totally different thories.

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angela_michelle 6 years ago from United States Author

No one knows, although they believe he died of health reasons. There are theories, maybe I should include them in the article.

jezze 6 years ago

i love mysteries so how did tutankhamen die

angela_michelle profile image

angela_michelle 6 years ago from United States Author

Thank you so much pinkhawk for the great compliment. I do find it very interesting as well. But I've always been a sucker for a good mystery.

pinkhawk profile image

pinkhawk 6 years ago from Pearl of the Orient

wow, this is mysteriously interesting and it's exciting to uncover the truth behind.. worth reading.. thank you very much for sharing ma'am! ^.^

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angela_michelle 6 years ago from United States Author

Thanks Suziecat! I appreciate you stopping by!!!

suziecat7 profile image

suziecat7 6 years ago from Asheville, NC

Great research here and interesting topic. I'm a fan.

angela_michelle profile image

angela_michelle 6 years ago from United States Author

I can see why you would have mixed feelings about that. I have to admit, there is a part of me that agrees with you. Then again, how will we learn about the rich history of our world without it. I guess in the end, the digging up of these treasures, researching, and displaying them wins over. I find our world completely fascinating, and think its so neat what we find out about our wonderful world!

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the pink umbrella 6 years ago from the darkened forest deep within me.

I have kind of a mixed feeling about uncovering mummies. These burials are the most sacred and ritualistic in the world. I think that in our search for knowledge, we have gone too far, and i see it as more of a desecration than an exhibition. On the other hand, it is amazing what has been found in uncovering these mummies, and the great lengths the egyptians have gone to as far as making sure the dead had everything they needed in the aftorlife. Wonderful hub. Not something i would research on my own, so i was happy to have come across it while checking to see what you've written recently! Im rating this hub up!

angela_michelle profile image

angela_michelle 6 years ago from United States Author

I know what you mean pollyanna, it is just completely fascinating! I can't believe that so much still remains from them. It makes me wonder what is out there, that we have yet to discover! Life is truly an amazing marvel!

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angela_michelle 6 years ago from United States Author

Kflippin, For some reason, I just can't watch the videos, I think I am going to have to try on a different computer. It might be my connection, it's been storming all week here. I'll have to try when our connection is clearer.

Pollyannalana profile image

Pollyannalana 6 years ago from US

I covered a lot of things like this in college and it so very interesting,isn't it? They did some weird stuff back then but still to find out after all these years,just amazing. Great hub. Polly

KFlippin profile image

KFlippin 6 years ago from Amazon

Hey Angela, The links are to short video clips revealing the findings, rather than articles, they just showed up on the hyperlink label identical, but they are two different short discovery channel vids. They found he had a severe form of malaria in his DNA, and some consider that was his most likely cause of death. And I think it may have been King Tut that was so soaked in unsually excessive embalming fluid they feared they wouldn't get any DNA, can't recall for sure, it was too long ago for my old brain, could have been the father or grandfather. Anyway, great hub! Always an interesting topic.

angela_michelle profile image

angela_michelle 6 years ago from United States Author

Thank you Garnetbird, I always appreciate comments from you!

GarnetBird profile image

GarnetBird 6 years ago from Northern California

First rate HUB!

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angela_michelle 6 years ago from United States Author

I did read about the cleft, although I didn't know about the bad malaria or the club foot. Good to know, I still haven't read over that article, but I definitely plan to, and update my hub!

angela_michelle profile image

angela_michelle 6 years ago from United States Author

They did find that he had a broken leg, there was so much speculation around the leg and DNA tests, that I left it out, since there was nothing for certain. They did speculate he might have had some genetic disease, but I don't know if it ever was for certain.

KFlippin profile image

KFlippin 6 years ago from Amazon

He had a very bad malaria in his DNA, and he had a club foot, and it seems like they said a cleft palate as well? Can't recall for sure.

jayjay40 profile image

jayjay40 6 years ago from Bristol England

Very interesting and well researched. I watched a programme that used DNA and said his father was Amenophis IV and it may have been a genetic deasease that caused Tut's death as they found that he was using walking sticks, even at his young age.

angela_michelle profile image

angela_michelle 6 years ago from United States Author

Interesting, all the stuff I looked into kept saying that the DNA test was coming up inconclusive. I'll have to really look over that site, and update my hub to be with the current facts. Thanks for the great website!! I really appreciate it!

angela_michelle profile image

angela_michelle 6 years ago from United States Author

Thanks Dallas. LOL. :) I'm glad you appreciated it. :)

KFlippin profile image

KFlippin 6 years ago from Amazon

Discovery Channel did a great series of shows on the latest DNA research into King Tut's parentage. They've proved that the KV55 mummy is Akhenaton, son of Amenhotep III, and that Akhenaton/kv55 is the father of Tutankhamun. It's at this link: http://dsc.discovery.com/videos/king-tut-unwrapped...


They've also confirmed via DNA which Mummy is his mother, in the above link. It's the woman with the broken in jaw/lower face, and a 'young lady'.

Caught most of this series when it came out a few months back, it was fascinating. Glad to see they've got lots of clips from the series on the Discovery web site.

Really enjoyed your hub, it is such a fascinating topic in all respects. And timely as well, I noticed breaking news from the past few days is that the DNA of King Tut is distinctly Western European, a topic of great controversy of late.

dallas93444 profile image

dallas93444 6 years ago from Bakersfield, CA

..."Mummies" get "wrapped up" in their after life. Another great hub. Keep them coming.

angela_michelle profile image

angela_michelle 6 years ago from United States Author

Thank you, I really enjoyed researching the information. I found it absolutely intriguing!

Joni Douglas profile image

Joni Douglas 6 years ago

Fascinating reading about ancient Egypt. The hub is awesome.

angela_michelle profile image

angela_michelle 6 years ago from United States Author

I know, it surprises me what I have been learning about Egyptians, especially at what age they married and conceived!

Dave Mathews profile image

Dave Mathews 6 years ago from NORTH YORK,ONTARIO,CANADA

Angela, a nice piece on the young Pharoh. It must have been hard to be expected to rule at such a young age.


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angela_michelle 6 years ago from United States Author

Thank you so much Pamela! I'm glad you liked it!

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angela_michelle 6 years ago from United States Author

CMHypno, I'm not sure, I would love to find out. They do know though that Meketaten died during child birth around the same time he was born. She was like only 9 at the time, and they believe that is why she did not survive. I don't know though. I'm curious at what age egyptians normally got married and procreated. Because even King Tut was married at nine. But then he didn't have any surviving children, so who knows.

Pamela99 profile image

Pamela99 6 years ago from United States

Angela, I think this is an awesome hub. It is very well written and very interesting. Rated up!

CMHypno profile image

CMHypno 6 years ago from Other Side of the Sun

Hi angela-michelle, thanks for mentioning my Nefertiti hub here. Interesting hub on Tutankhamen, I think that it was unlikely that Meketaten was his mother, as they would have been roughly the same age. I think that Tutankhamen was a child of Amenophis III and Queen Tiye. Like all good mysteries, it would not be as interesting if we really knew the answer!

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angela_michelle 6 years ago from United States Author

I'm glad you enjoyed it. I found it absolutely fascinating!!!

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MaryRenee 6 years ago

Angela, awesome hub! I loved reading it, thanks for sharing! :)

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