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King Tut's big Secret

Updated on August 31, 2015

Meet King Tutenkhamen

The Solid Gold Death Mask of Tutankhamen
The Solid Gold Death Mask of Tutankhamen | Source

From the beginning

A few days ago I was reading the local newspaper and came across a rather interesting story, a story of a secret kept for three thousand three hundred and fifty years (give or take a few). Basically a secret older than the earliest part of the Bible!

And it's been staring us in the face for the last ninety years!

Staring us in the face, yet we've missed it right up to now!

What do I mean? Well one of the biggest puzzles of the Ancient world regards King Tutenkhamun. The boy King who ruled Ancient Egypt for nine years but when he died he was literally forgotten and even the grave robbers forgot about him as he lay undisturbed for three thousand two hundred years.

King Tutankhamen

King Tutankhamen

He was buried in the humblest tomb that any Pharaoh has ever been found in. A tomb so small that Archaeologists have wondered if it was meant to be a tomb! Some have said it was simply because he died so young that they simply thought they buried him in the part of the tomb that was ready and they simply 'moved on' but now there's another theory and it's one that's got the archaeological world excited and worried as if it's true then one of the most famous sites on the planet will have to be dismantled to see what's really there!

The Boy King

How he looked in life. (from a bust found in his tomb)
How he looked in life. (from a bust found in his tomb) | Source

IT MAY BE WHAT IT SEEMS

To the Archaeologist King Tutankhamen's tomb seems to be a simple 'antechamber' and that's exactly what it may be according to a new theory!

Using technology that would seem more at home in something like a science fiction movie Archaeologists are now studying many Ancient monuments with 'new eyes' and seeing things they never realized were there! Digital cameras linked to GPS trackers can now put artifacts within fractions of an inch of where they were found, hieroglyphics can be faithfully re-created in three dimensions giving accurate representation of the original

Basically they can now literally make full scale 3D models for scholars to keep working on long after the dig season (usually only two months in summer) has gone. The result? Much more time to pore over what you found, and that's what led to the discovery!

BUILDING A REPLICA

Tourists have been able to visit King Tut's tomb for years but slowly more and more damage has been done so now the Egyptian government went ahead with using the technology to build a complete replica of the tomb, that meant not only taking photos but scanning the walls to find out how thick the plaster is? The answer was the North and West walls plaster isn't as thick as the others, and there seems to be nothing behind it!

That has Egyptologists wondering if there might be another explanation. The tomb should be showing the rock behind the plaster but it isn't. Couple that with the fact that where the rock 'disappears' is also where there are slight indentations in the walls and you get the kind of thing Indiana Jones would be looking for and it's just the kind you'd expect would be there if you had another doorway. Is there another doorway there? (or two as there are two sites where this happens). It's been suggested that there are two doorways, one to a storeroom and one to another burial chamber, but who's?

Nicholas Reeves, an Archaeologist at the University of Arizona thinks that there is something special behind those walls. The layout of the tomb and the fact that there is what seems like doors leads him to think that King Tut has been hiding a big secret, the Tomb of his Mother Queen Nefertiti

Who was he

The Story as we know it.

To fully understand the situation you actually have to go back to 1,350 BC and the reign of his Father Akhenaten.

Akhenaten, the Apostate Pharaoh of Egypt. Up until his reign the Pharaohs had believed in the gods of Egypt but Akhenaten was different. At the start of his reign he was called Amenhotep lV but five years into his reign he abandoned the gods of Egypt for the one god 'Aten'

Some have said that Akhenaten was an influence on Moses but the dates are wrong for that and during Akhenaten's reign the 'Habiru' were arriving in Canaan and taking the cities of Egypt's vassal kingdoms, one by one they were falling until the remainder sent urgent pleas to the Pharaoh that we now know as the Amarna letters.

A good argument could be made for the opposite, that Akhenaten was influenced by the Hebrews and Moses!

Akhenaten's chief wife and Queen was Nefertiti, a very beautiful and intelligent woman who alongside her husband changed the very faith of the nation. Not only that but after Akhenaten's death in 1336 she is thought to have ruled alone for a while before her son Tutankhamen acceded to the throne.

Nefertiti is thought to have been one of only three women ever to rule Egypt. In all the three thousand years of history only three women ever rose to the rank of Pharaoh! Hatsheput was the fifth Pharaoh of the 18th Dynasty.

King Tut's Mum

The Bust of Nefertiti in the Berlin Museum. King Tut's Mum
The Bust of Nefertiti in the Berlin Museum. King Tut's Mum | Source

Queen Nefertiti

Was Akhenaten's chief wife and queen. she is thought to have survived him and ruled for a while until her son Tutankhamen was ready to take the throne at the tender age of ten. For a short time they are thought to have ruled together until she died.

King Tut himself only ruled for nine years and by the age of nineteen he was dead! An event that happened so quickly that it took the nation by surprise and he was buried quickly. it was said he was buried so quickly that the paint on the walls didn't have time to dry before the Tomb was sealed and forgotten about.

Nefertiti's tomb has never been found and there are many theories as to what happened to her but no one has found an answer, maybe that's until now!

The Valley of the Kings

The Pharaohs are buried in the valley of the Kings, their queens are buried in another valley not far away called the valley of the Queens.

In the valley of the Kings almost all the tombs follow the same pattern that as you enter the tomb you turn left to enter the burial chamber, that is almost all, there is one exception.

In the valley of the queens as you enter the tombs you turn right to enter the burial chamber, there are no exceptions! The one exception in the valley of the Kings is Tutankhamen's tomb where you turn right to enter the burial chamber (just like you would in a queen's tomb)

Could it be that King Tut was actually buried in his Mother's tomb? and that behind the false walls is one of the greatest archaeological finds in history just waiting to be found?

Lets face it

Egyptologists are faced with a huge dilemma. King Tut was the only Pharaoh to be discovered with all his burial treasure. he was literally buried in his tomb and promptly forgotten about. His tomb was raided but not for the treasure, it was raided (twice it's believed) for the perishables he was buried with. Some even say the tomb was sealed up so quick when he was buried that the paint literally wasn't dry on the walls!

Queen Nefertiti was an enigma, so important a figure in Egypt's history yet until now we had no idea where she was buried, but the possibility is that behind the one seemingly insignificant yet undisturbed tomb there may be an even greater tomb that has been undisturbed for three and a half thousand years, not only that but from one of the most important figures in history. But to do that we have to take a huge gamble.

As of mid August apparently the Egyptian Antiquities Authority has given the 'Go ahead' for Ground penetrating Radar equipment to take a look at what might be there. Apparently they think there is enough weight to the theory to at least take a look before deciding!

Do we take the risk?

To see if Nefertiti is there we have to damage King Tut's Tomb, a world famous tourist site, do we take that risk?

See results

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    • lawrence01 profile image
      Author

      Lawrence Hebb 2 years ago from Hamilton, New Zealand

      Faith

      I think King Tutenkhamen will still be teaching us some things about Ancient Egypt in a hundred years time. I just went online to check some information and I think I'll have to put links in to some articles as there is so much mire people would love to read.

      Glad you liked it

      Lawrence

    • lawrence01 profile image
      Author

      Lawrence Hebb 2 years ago from Hamilton, New Zealand

      Alexadry

      I lived a couple of years in Cairo and can highly recommend that if you go to see the Pyramids take the camel rides round the back, you'll see so much more!

      They also have horses there that are a lot of fun too.

      The valley of the Kings is also good but King Tut's actual treasure is in the Egyptian Museum in downtown Cairo (its an absolute MUST)

      Makes me want to go back and visit!

      Lawrence

    • lawrence01 profile image
      Author

      Lawrence Hebb 2 years ago from Hamilton, New Zealand

      Genna

      I think things like this don't happen all that quickly! I think the next step might be to get a good look at what might be behind the walls and that might involve some form of ground penetrating radar (kind of like a huge detector but designed to pick up gaps in the rocks etc).

      Once they get an idea of the rough shape of the cavities that'll tell them what's likely to be there. They already think the one on the West wall is probably a storeroom, but its the one on the North wall they're interested in for Nefertiti's tomb!

      The next few years might hold a few surprises for us!

      Glad you liked the hub.

      Lawrence

    • Faith Reaper profile image

      Faith Reaper 2 years ago from southern USA

      Fascinating article, dear Lawrence! My husband and I just recently watched a movie about King Tut and it was all so interesting.

      That is quite an interesting find and major decision to be made for sure. Maybe if they wait a few more years for more technology, all can be preserved and maybe even a bigger find in store too. How exciting.

      Thank you for this detailed hub and all the work you put into it.

      Blessings

    • lawrence01 profile image
      Author

      Lawrence Hebb 2 years ago from Hamilton, New Zealand

      Peachpurple

      My story was based on the Daily Mail story. There is some dispute/discussion as to where Nefertiti might be buried but no one knows for sure. The thing is a lot of things about King Tut's tomb are wrong for a male but fit with the idea of it being a woman's tomb even though it's in the valley of the Kings!

      Glad it made you think

      Lawrence

    • alexadry profile image

      Adrienne Janet Farricelli 2 years ago from USA

      I was always fascinated by this subject and watched many documentaries. Hopefully, one day I will be able to visit Egypt and see all these treasures for myself.

    • Genna East profile image

      Genna East 2 years ago from Massachusetts, USA

      This is quite the conundrum. Egyptology has always fascinated me, so I will be interested in the outcome. Nefertiti seems to beckon from within; I wonder if they will wait until more advanced technology solves the problem, or take the risk. Very interesting article.

    • peachpurple profile image

      peachy 2 years ago from Home Sweet Home

      The pic i saw at google search was really different from here and the story varies..

    • lawrence01 profile image
      Author

      Lawrence Hebb 2 years ago from Hamilton, New Zealand

      Mel

      I think we all are!

      Lawrence

    • Mel Carriere profile image

      Mel Carriere 2 years ago from San Diego California

      Very interesting hypothesis and I'm looking forward to seeing how it plays out. Great hub!

    • lawrence01 profile image
      Author

      Lawrence Hebb 2 years ago from Hamilton, New Zealand

      Ann

      It wasn't that well publicised, though I did find a copy of the 'Daily Mail' article in our local newspaper (the 'Mail' is usually pretty reliable, it's about on par with 'USA today')

      I don't think anything is going to happen soon as Egypt is 'infamous' for its beurocracy (one Documentary put it "A beautiful country defended by an inpenitrable beurocracy!) But it will be exciting to see.

      Have a great weekend.

      Lawrence

    • annart profile image

      Ann Carr 2 years ago from SW England

      Fascinating. I always enjoyed Egyptian history at school; much more colourful than many other eras! I'm not sure about destroying a tomb for another but I'm sure they could manage to preserve much of what they disturb. I think it's worth a look.

      I'm surprised we haven't heard anything about this. Maybe I've just missed it!

      Ann

    • lawrence01 profile image
      Author

      Lawrence Hebb 2 years ago from Hamilton, New Zealand

      I thought about it afterwards and I think that the Archaeologists are at that point now that they think they can dismantle the wall and rebuild it afterwards (they did this with the Temple of Ramses in Abu Simbel in the 1960's when they moved the whole Temple further up the valley to make way for Lake Nasser created by the Aswan dam).

      Would be interesting to see if they could though!

      Lawrence

    • Robert Sacchi profile image

      Robert Sacchi 2 years ago

      Aviannovice has a good point if there is a reasonable expectation of such a development within a few years then I can see waiting a few years.

    • lawrence01 profile image
      Author

      Lawrence Hebb 2 years ago from Hamilton, New Zealand

      I think its one reason for the replica. That way none of the inscriptions on the walls are lost.

    • aviannovice profile image

      Deb Hirt 2 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      If they wait a few short years for the technology, everything can remain intact. There could well be a bigger secret than Nefertiti, and that could be destroyed in the search.

    • lawrence01 profile image
      Author

      Lawrence Hebb 2 years ago from Hamilton, New Zealand

      In Ancient Egypt it was Nefertiti! She ruled for many years (with her husband) but Tutenkhamen only ruled for nine years!

      Nefertiti and her husband oversaw the greatest transformation of Egyptian society that it experienced, from polytheism to monotheism, it didn't last but maybe we'll get clues as to why?

      Glad you enjoyed the hub.

      Lawrence

    • phoenix2327 profile image

      Zulma Burgos-Dudgeon 2 years ago from United Kingdom

      This was a fascinating hub. I'm not sure if we should take the gamble. I supposed it depends who is held in higher esteem. Tut or Nefertiti.

    • lawrence01 profile image
      Author

      Lawrence Hebb 2 years ago from Hamilton, New Zealand

      Robert

      I agree with that, not to mention the possibility of the treasures they might find, after all she was one of the great queens of Egypt.

      Lawrence

    • Robert Sacchi profile image

      Robert Sacchi 2 years ago

      That is a difficult choice but I tend to be on the side of seeking knowledge.

    • lawrence01 profile image
      Author

      Lawrence Hebb 2 years ago from Hamilton, New Zealand

      Damien.

      Glad you liked the hub. He is a fascinating piece of history.

      Bill

      Glad I don't have to make that call too

      Lawrence

    • billybuc profile image

      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Quite the dilemma. I'm all for preserving historical treasures, but do you risk losing one to gain another? Glad I don't have to make that decision.

    • Damian10 profile image

      Damian 2 years ago from Naples

      Great job Lawrence! Wonderful research and history.

      Blessings!

    • lawrence01 profile image
      Author

      Lawrence Hebb 2 years ago from Hamilton, New Zealand

      Newbizman

      I agree, but waiting until the replica is built might be the best way then we'll have a record of what it looked like originally.

      Carb Diva

      You're not the only one, what happens next is anyones guess. It's beginning to sound more and more like the plot for an Indiana Jones movie, but with the gadgets from Star Wars not the 1930's!

    • lawrence01 profile image
      Author

      Lawrence Hebb 2 years ago from Hamilton, New Zealand

      Kiss and tales

      Akhenaten (King Tuts father) brought in the worship of the sun disc "Aten" but the strange thing (to me) is it all happened at the same time a group of people had come across the Jordan, taken Jericho, smashed the armies of Egypts allies and were setting up in the land!

      Call me strange but I think it significant that Egypt was turning to monotheism right when the Hebrews were conquering Canaan under Joshua!

      Lawrence

    • Kiss andTales profile image

      Kiss andTales 2 years ago

      monotheism , I looked the word up , to believe in one God, very interesting , no wonder the people called him an apostate.

      But if I lived back there with them , I would be one also because I worship one God the Father Jehovah even Jesus prays to him also.

    • lawrence01 profile image
      Author

      Lawrence Hebb 2 years ago from Hamilton, New Zealand

      Bobbi

      He is a fascinating character. What's amazing is the only reason we know about him is because they forgot about him and left his tomb untouched for three thousand three hundred years.

      Scientists and Archaeologists have been fascinated by his story since the day the tomb was opened.

      A few years ago they thought they'd worked out who his mother was (they suspected another mummy found in a Royal tomb) but DNA tests showed they were brother and sister!

      Also the fact that for twenty years Egypt practiced monotheism under his father! Amazing

    • Chantelle Porter profile image

      Chantelle Porter 2 years ago from Chicago

      Really interesting article. Let us know what happens!

    • Carb Diva profile image

      Linda Lum 2 years ago from Washington State, USA

      Lawrence - Absolutely fascinating. I love mystery stories and what makes this one even better is that it might be true. Thank you for another well done hub!!

    • newbizmau profile image

      Maurice Glaude 2 years ago from Mobile, AL

      Take the risk.

    • Kiss andTales profile image

      Kiss andTales 2 years ago

      Great read , I really appreciate how you gathered important infomation on this subject, details about Kings to the left , Queens to the right, I agree that could be a great clue to her tomb that may be hidden behind her son , since they had a great union. Thanks for sharing.

    • lawrence01 profile image
      Author

      Lawrence Hebb 2 years ago from Hamilton, New Zealand

      Jodah

      I think I'd agree with you. The good thing is they were building a replica anyway. It will be interesting to see what happens

    • PurvisBobbi44 profile image

      PurvisBobbi44 2 years ago from Florida

      Hi,

      What a hub to read first in the morning. I love reading about King Tut and I wish I knew more about him as a person growing up and ruling beside his mother I am sure.

      Great hub and I am sharing.

      Bobbi Purvis

    • Jodah profile image

      John Hansen 2 years ago from Queensland Australia

      This is very interesting Lawrence. I find Egyptology, and ancient history in general, fainating. I think they should risk damaging King Tut's tomb in the hope of an even greater find.