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the story of the valley of kings
the story of the valley of kings part 2
time line of events
The discovery of the tomb of King Tut
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The discovery of the tomb of King Tut
The most famous tomb is the tomb KV62, the
King Tutankhamun. The discovery of King Tut's tomb was made by Howard Carter on November 4, 1922. Tutankhamun's tomb was the very first royal tomb to be discovered that was still largely intact, although tomb robbers had been inside , and was the last major discovery in the valley.
Now how was it discovered?
Over the past century it had been said that there was nothing else left to find in the Valley of the Kings, Howard Carter and his sponsor (Lord Carnarvon) spent a number of years and money searching for a tomb that they weren't sure existed. In November 1922 they found the tomb. Howard Carter had discovered not just an unknown ancient tomb, but one that had lain undisturbed for over 2,500 years! What lay inside of the tomb shocked the whole world.
The Long Search
After a long, long search Howard Carter said that there were multiple pieces of evidence, a cup, a piece of gold foil, and a box of items which all had the name of Tutankhamun, that convinced Howard Carter that the tomb of King Tut had not been found.Howard Carter also believed that the location of the items were the key to finding king tuts tomb.
the job kept going on the afternoon of November 4th to the next morning. By the late afternoon on November 5th, 12 stairs were revealed and in front of them, stood a huge door. Carter searched the HUGE door for a name but of the seals that could be read, he found only the script in a different language. Carter was very excited
"The design was certainly of the Eighteenth Dynasty. Could it be the tomb of a noble buried here by royal consent? Was it a royal cache, a hiding-place to which a mummy and its equipment had been removed for safety? Or was it actually the tomb of the king for whom I had spent so many years in search"
said Howard Carter
On the morning of November 25th, the doorway was photographed and noted. Then the door was removed. A passageway emerged filled to the top with limestone with an closer look he could tell that tomb robbers had dug a hole through the of passageway and the hole had been refilled in with larger darker rocks than used for the rest of the wall.
The following afternoon the fill along the passage way had been cleared and what stood there was another door almost the same to the first one but still there were signs of a hole that had been resealed.
"We were firmly convinced by this time that it was a cache that we were about to open, and not a tomb. The arrangement of stairway, entrance passage and doors reminded us forcibly of the cache of Akhenaten and Tyi material found in the very near vicinity of the present excavation by Davis, and the fact that Tutankhamun's seals occurred there likewise seemed almost certain proof that we were right in our conjecture. We were soon to know. There lay the sealed doorway, and behind it was the answer to the question" said Howard Carter.
Tension came. If there was anything left inside it would be a discovery of a lifetime for Carter and his team. If the tomb was relatively intact, it would be something the world had never seen.
"With trembling hands I made a tiny breach in the upper left-hand corner. Darkness and blank space, as far as an iron testing-rod could reach, showed that whatever lay beyond was empty, and not filled like the passage we had just cleared. Candle tests were applied as a precaution against possible foul gases, and then, widening the hold a little, I inserted the candle and peered in, Lord Carnarvon, Lady Evelyn and Callender standing anxiously beside me to hear the verdict. At first I could see nothing, the hot air escaping from the chamber causing the candle flame to flicker, but presently, as my eyes grew accustomed to the light, details of the room within emerged slowly from the mist, strange animals, statues, and gold - everywhere the glint of gold. For the moment - an eternity it must have seemed to the others standing by - I was struck dumb with amazement, and when Lord Carnarvon, unable to stand the suspense any longer, inquired anxiously, "Can you see anything?" it was all I could do to get out the words, "Yes, wonderful things"" said Carter.
The wall opposite to the entrance was piled litrally to the ceiling with boxes, chairs, couches, and so much more, most of them made from gold.
On the right wall stood two life size statues of the king Tut, facing each other as if protecting the entrance that was between them. This sealed door also showed some signs of being broken into and resealed. To the left of the door from the passage lay a tangle of parts from some broken chariots.
As Howard Carter and the others spent time looking at the room and its treasures, they noticed another big door behind the couches on the far wall. This sealed door also had a hole in it, but the hole had not been resealed. Carefully, they crawled and shone their light.
"I think the discovery of this second chamber, with its crowded contents, had a somewhat sobering effect on us. excitement had gripped us hitherto, and given us no pause for thought, but now for the first time we began to realize what a prodigious task we had in front of us, and what a responsibility it entailed. This was no ordinary find, to be disposed of in a normal season's work; nor was there any precedent to show us how to handle it. The thing was outside all experience, bewildering, and for the moment it seemed as though there were more to be done than any human agency could accomplish" said Carter
Carter and his team had to be extremely careful when attempting to remove any of these objects. Since many of the items were in extremely breakable states such as beaded sandals in which the threading had totally disintegrated, many items needed immediate treatment,for example a special spray to keep them intact for removal
"Clearing the objects from the Antechamber was like playing a gigantic game of spillikins. So crowded were they that it was a matter of extreme difficulty to move one without running serious risk of damaging others, and in some cases they were so inextricably tangled that an elaborate system of props and supports had to be devised to hold one object or group of objects in place while another was being removed. At such times life was a nightmare" said Carter
It took Carter and his team seven weeks to clear the chamber. On February 17 1923, they began breaking the sealed door between the statues.
". . . when, after about ten minutes' work, I had made a hole large enough to enable me to do so, I inserted an electric torch. An astonishing sight its light revealed, for there, within a yard of the doorway, stretching as far as one could see and blocking the entrance to the chamber, stood what to all appearances was a solid wall of gold. . . . It was, beyond any question, the sepulchral chamber in which we stood, for there, towering above us, was one of the great gilt shrines beneath which kings were laid. So enormous was this structure . . . that it filled within a little the entire area of the chamber, a space of some two feet only separating it from the walls on all four sides, while its roof, with cornice top and torus moulding, reached almost to the ceiling. . . ." said Howard Carter
The inside of the Burial Chamber was almost completely filled with a large shrine over 16 feet long, 10 unlike the othertombs that were left un smoothed and un polished, the walls of this Chamber were covered with plaster and painted a shade of yellow. On the ground there were some items, including two broken necklaces that looked as if they had been dropped by robbers.
When the fourth shrine was taken apart the king's coffin was revealed,The coffin was in a human shape.
A year and a half later, they were ready to lift the lid of the coffin,
When they lifted the lid of the coffin, they found another, smaller coffin. The lifting of the lid of the second coffin showed a third, made entirely of gold!!!!!! On top of this third, and final, coffin was a dark material that had once been liquid and poured over the coffin from the hands to the ankles. The liquid had hardened over years and stuck the third coffin to the bottom of the second. Then the lid of the third coffin was raised......
"Before us, occupying the whole interior of the golden coffin, was an impressive, neat and carefully made mummy, over which had been poured anointing unguents [ointments] as in the case of the outside of its coffin - again in great quantity - consolidated and blackened by age. In contradistinction to the general dark and sombre effect, due to these unguents, was a brilliant, one might say magnificent, burnished gold mask [picture] or similitude of the king, covering his head and shoulders, which, like the feet, had been intentionally avoided when using the unguents" he said
At last, the royal mummy of Tutankhamun was revealed. It had been over 3,300 years since a human being had seen the king's remains and now they had found him it was a very special moment!!!!!!!!
king tuts tomb
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