Egyptologist one step closer to finding Queen Nefertiti A policeman takes a selfie at the Amenhotep II tomb in the Valley of the Kings in Luxor, Egypt, Tuesday, Sept. 29, 2015. Egypt's antiquities minister says King Tut's tomb may contain hidden chambers, lending support to a British Egyptologist's theory that a queen may be buried in the walls of the 3,300 year-old pharaonic mausoleum. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)
Egyptologist one step closer to finding Queen Nefertiti
Lexile

The search for ancient Egypt's Queen Nefertiti in an alleged hidden chamber in King Tut's tomb has gained strength. Egypt's antiquities minister said he is more convinced a queen's tomb may lay hidden behind King Tutankhamun's final resting place.
 
Minister Mamdouh el-Damaty toured the burial sites of Tutankhamun and other pharaohs in Luxor's famed Valley of the Kings with British Egyptologist Nicholas Reeves. El-Damaty said he thinks King Tut's 3,300-year-old pharaonic mausoleum probably contains at least one hidden chamber.
 
Reeves theorized that Tutankhamun, popularly known as King Tut, may have been rushed into an outer chamber of what was originally Nefertiti's tomb.  King Tut died at age 19.
 
"I agree with him that there's probably something behind the walls," el-Damaty said. But he said if anyone is buried there, it is likely Kia. She is believed by some Egyptologists to be King Tut's mother.
 
Researchers have examined high-resolution images of King Tut's tomb. The images "revealed several very interesting features which look not at all natural. Features like very, very straight lines, which are 90 degrees to the ground. (They are) positioned so as to correspond with other features within the tomb," Reeves said Sept. 29 during the visit.
 
These features would have been difficult to capture with the naked eye, he said.
 
Reeves said the walls could conceal two unexplored doorways. One perhaps leads to Nefertiti's tomb. He also argues that the design of the tomb suggests it was built for a queen.
 
El-Damaty said he will seek final approval for a radar inspection of the tomb.
 
Nefertiti is famous for her beauty. She was the subject of a famous 3,300-year-old bust. She was the primary wife of the Pharaoh Akhenaten. He tried and failed to switch Egypt to an early form of monotheism. That is the belief that there is only one God.  A pharaoh followed Akhenaten. That pharaoh is referred to as Smenkhare. Next came Tut, who is widely believed to have been Akhenaten's son.
 
Reeves believes that Smenkhare is actually Nefertiti.
 
"Nefertiti disappears ... according to the latest inscriptions just being found," said Reeves. "I think that Nefertiti didn't disappear. She simply changed her name."
 
After Nefertiti died, Tut buried her. When he died, someone decided to extend the tomb, Reeves suggested. "Since Nefertiti had been buried a decade before, they remembered that tomb was there. And they thought, well, perhaps we can extend it," he said.
 
Tutankhamun's tomb was discovered in 1922. It was filled with artifacts, including the famed golden funeral mask. It made him known the world over. It boosted interest in that era. It is called the Amarna period.
 
While writings in tombs provide some information, they are not always helpful in clearing up a pharaoh's ancestry.
 
"In the case of royal tombs they're not dealing with mortal life. They're dealing with the beyond," said Reeves. He added that writing things such as the family tree "is just irrelevant."
 
Instead, these writings include things such as "spells to enable the deceased to reach the lands of the gods," said Reeves. This means Egyptologists use a number of factors to develop theories. Those lead to divisions among experts about the period.
 
"Every Egyptologist has got a different view on the Amarna period. We have a lot of evidence to discuss but not just quite enough to make a final decision," said Reeves.
 
"If we find something extra, even one small new writing would be a great bonus. It could change everything," Reeves said.
 
Tut, Nefertiti, and Akhenaten's family led Egypt during one of its most unsettled times. It ended with a military takeover by Egypt's top general, Horemheb.
 
"Egypt basically fell apart under Akhenaten. It was the military that pulled it all together again," said Reeves. He added that Egyptians wiped out Tut's name from official records of pharaohs.
 
Horemheb "made laws to control the country and to fight against the corruption, against the police who were corrupted, against the high officials," said Mohamed Saleh. He is a former director of the Egyptian Museum. He also toured the site.
 
Tourism Minister Hesham Zazou said he hopes the new discovery will restore tourism in ancient Egyptian sites. Tourism at Red Sea beach resorts is rebounding. It fell after years of turmoil following the 2011 ouster of President Hosni Mubarak, said Zazou. But otherwise "tourism is suffering tremendously."

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CRITICAL THINKING QUESTION
Why did the ancient Egyptians use hidden chambers?
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COMMENTS (59)
  • kyled-2929778-
    10/07/2015 - 03:45 p.m.

    That would be a mystery and the people would have to find it.

  • Eugene0808-YYCA
    10/07/2015 - 07:12 p.m.

    I think this is cool because scientists and archaeologists are getting one step closer to discovering Queen Nefertiti's tomb. This will be big because where it was was a mystery to us, just like King Tutankhamen's tomb.
    Why did the ancient Egyptians use hidden chambers?
    Answer: The ancient Egyptians used hidden chambers because some things are not visible to the naked eye so that tomb robbers do not get through.

  • John0724-YYCA
    10/07/2015 - 07:42 p.m.

    I think that now we are a step closer of finding King Tut's mother's tomb because now since they found all these good clues they should know part of the answer. I think that now thanks to technology things are getting better.

  • ryan0420-yyca
    10/07/2015 - 07:45 p.m.

    Woh that is pretty cool that we are close to finding more about the Queen that lived long ago. I think that it is cool that the queen's tomb is nearly 4,000 years old. If we find out more about them we might find more stuff. I think that they should try finding more about the mummies so we find out about.

  • antoniol-san
    10/08/2015 - 12:33 p.m.

    How did kig tut die

  • nickh-ver
    10/12/2015 - 12:42 p.m.

    I wonder if there actuly is a hidden room within king Tut's tomb. if there is it would be a great discovery and probaly raise torisum that the area severely needs

  • sofiat-4-bar
    10/12/2015 - 07:11 p.m.

    Ancient Egyptians used hidden chambers becaus they buried millions in treasures with the bodies as well as putting spells on the tombs. I agree with the Egyptians because who wants some random person looking where ur dead relative or friend is buried.

  • caseyd-bly
    10/13/2015 - 09:38 a.m.

    People think behind a wall of King Tuts tomb is his mothers tomb.
    Reason this is important is because it could help find Queen Nefertiti.
    I learned a lot about Egyptian final resting places and much about King Tot and his family.

  • jakobef-tsi
    10/13/2015 - 02:04 p.m.

    this book was cool

  • apolloniah-tra
    10/13/2015 - 02:10 p.m.

    it looks like a mummy.Mummys are my kid

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