The Valley of Kings in Luxor, Egypt, is the home to many tombs that have always been a destination for many Luxor tours, but none as famous as Tomb of Tutankhamun. He became king at the tender age of 9 and ruled for only ten years until his sudden death at the age of 19 around 1324 B.C. Historians suggest his death might be one of the earliest assassinations in history. Nevertheless, he was frail and had numerous health issues. That coupled with customary inter- marriage could have led to his untimely death at such a young age.
Since his tomb had other structures built on top, it virtually escaped the attention of both robbers and archaeologists for 3,200 years. Then Howard Carter made the stunning discovery in 1922. Between the tombs of Rameses II and Rameses IV, he opened up the only intact tomb ever found.
Architecture, Taste and Aspects in Tomb of Tutankhamun
A series of sixteen steps leads to a door that further descends into a corridor leading to a second door. This in turn opens into the antechamber which is undecorated as its believed to store the embalming equipment, funeral beds, chariots, king’s clothes, and the oldest functioning brass instruments in the world.
The burial chamber is the only one decorated with images of deities, spells from the Book of the Dead, and how the king is welcomed in the underworld. Four massive gilded shrines surround the rose-tinted sarcophagus where the king’s body lies within three nested coffins. The outer two are of gilded wood while the inner one is pure gold. Tutankhamun’s mummy lies in full glory with a breathtaking gold portrait mask weighing 11 kg, covering his face- his signature.
Next to the burial chamber is a side room containing more than 5000 artifacts which Carter painstakingly cataloged for almost ten years. It contained gilded statues, jewelry, jars, model boats, and since the king was lame, 130 of his walking sticks among other items. This treasury room also contained the mummies of two fetuses believed to be the stillborn offspring of the king.
The final room is the annex used to store oils, food, ointments and contained around 2000 individual pieces which took Carter a whole year to catalog. Several caskets containing the residue of wine were also found.
The Art of Embalming in the Tomb of Tutankhamun
The perfect condition of the mummified body was a significant and amazing find helping scientists understand the complex process of embalming. The internal organs were preserved separately and the king was holding a crook and flail, symbols of power. An ostrich feather fan was found close to the king’s body suggesting that he loved ostrich hunting. The mummy can be viewed in the tomb where it has been placed in a temperature-controlled glass casket.
Travel Destinations and Tours
Tutankhamun’s tomb is a place worth visiting for those interested in seeing the glories of the ancient civilizations. Numerous tour operators are offering amazing deals to assist the visitors to experience the trip of a lifetime. Just keep in mind that it’s advisable for women to keep their legs covered. So pack your summer clothes and take a trip to meet Tutankhamun.