Excavations led by Egyptologist Howard Carter discovered Tutankhamun's tomb in the Valley of the Kings in 1922. Unlike the tombs of other pharaohs, Tutankhamun's tomb was largely hidden by rubble for the wealth of its existence, preventing mass looting. As a result, it became the first royal tomb from ancient Egypt that is still completely intact.
Beginning on November 4, 1922, Carter and his sponsor, George Herbert, 5th Earl of Carnarvon, began digging the tomb. More than 5.000 pieces made up the surprisingly generous burial.
Many were in extremely fragile condition and required an unheard-of level of protection to prepare their burials for exhumation.
The wealth of burial items sparked a media frenzy and led to the emergence of Ancient Egyptian-influenced designs by Western consumers.
The tomb became a source of national pride for the Egyptians, who had recently gained independence from British rule and strengthened Pharaohism. At the same time, this excavation is one of the factors that led to the establishment of the connections of a nationalist philosophy between modern Egypt and ancient civilization. It also caused conflict between the Egyptians and the British-led excavation team.
When Carnarvon succumbed to an infection, rumors that he was the result of his illness and an ancient curse associated with the tomb grew, fueling interest around the excavation.
Tensions between Carter and Egyptian officials over who should enter the tomb erupted after Carnarvon's death. Carter protested by quitting work at the beginning of 1924, igniting a conflict that continued until the end of the year.
Most of the tomb's contents were donated to the Egyptian Museum in Cairo as part of the settlement, which prevented the government and excavation supporters from separating the artifacts from the tomb as was customary in previous Egyptian excavations.
Outside of the scope of Tutankhamun's mummy being removed from his coffin in 1925, media attention waned in subsequent seasons. Between 1926 and 1930 the last two chambers of the tomb were cleaned, and in 1932 the rest of the burial objects were preserved and sent to Cairo.
The discovery of the tomb would have shown what a royal burial looked like and provided further details on the material culture of the Tutankhamun era. It illuminated the lifestyles of wealthy Egyptians and demonstrated the tactics of ancient tomb raiders.
Egyptology education initiatives took action on the impetus of the discovery. Thus, the Egyptian government capitalized on Tutankhamun's enduring notoriety by promoting the display of funerary items for fundraising and diplomacy. Tutankhamun has since come to represent ancient Egypt itself.
Günceleme: 04/11/2022 16:14
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