Exquisite Discovery: Rare Levantine Gold Artifacts Unearthed in Tutankhamun’s Tomb, Revealed After Nearly a Century of Secrecy in the Pharaoh’s 3,340-Year-Old Burial Chamber

Almost 100 decorative fittings for bow cases, quivers and bridles were transported hundreds of miles to be placed in the Pharaoh’s 3,340 year old tomb.

Their story can finally be told after they lay in a wooden box for more than 90 years after being discovered by British archaeologist Howard Carter in 1922.

The box had laid undisturbed in a Cairo museum for decades before researchers spent four years restoring its deteriorated contents.

Among the finds are images of fighting animals and goats at the tree of life that are foreign to Egyptian art and must have come from the Levant, or modern day Syria.

Some of the gold artefacts (pictured) found in King Tutankhamen’s tomb were actually made in Syria rather than Egypt. Almost 100 decorative fittings for bow cases, quivers and bridles were transported hundreds of miles to be placed in the Pharaoh’s 3,340 year old tomb

DISCOVERY OF TUTANKHAMUN

In 1907, Lord Carnarvon George Herbert asked English archaeologist and Egyptologist Howard Carter to supervise excavations in the Valley of the Kings.

On 4 November 1922, Carter’s group found steps that led to Tutankhamun’s tomb.

He spent several months cataloguing the antechamber before opening the burial chamber and discovering the sarcophagus in February 1923.

Tutankhamun was an Egyptian pharaoh of the 18th dynasty, and ruled between 1332 BC and 1323 BC.

He was the son of Akhenaten and took to the throne at the age of nine or ten.

When he became king, he married his half-sister, Ankhesenpaaten.

He died at around the age of 18 and his cause of death is unknown.

Lead researcher Professor Peter Pfalzner, of the University of Tubingen in Germany, said: ‘Presumably these motifs, which were once developed in Mesopotamia, made their way to the Mediterranean region and Egypt via Syria.

‘This again shows the great role that ancient Syria played in the dissemination of culture during the Bronze Age.’

The embossed gold relics were found by his team in the very same crate in which they were placed in 1922 after the famed find by Carter.

At the time, the relics were photographed and packed into the crate, where they were left to deteriorate for almost a century.

During four years of detailed work, conservators at the Egyptian Museum, Cairo, reassembled the fragments to produce the almost complete embossed gold decorations.

They also made drawings of the items and carried out comprehensive research.

Professor Pfalzner and colleagues examined and categorised the artwork on the artefacts.

The team distinguished Egyptian motifs from those that could be ascribed to an ‘international’, Middle Eastern canon from the Levant.

Among them are images of fighting animals and goats (pictured) at the tree of life that are foreign to Egyptian art and must have come from the Levant – or modern day Syria

EGYPTIAN IMPORTS

The team distinguished Egyptian motifs from those that could be ascribed to an ‘international’, Middle Eastern canon from the Levant.

These would have been shipped around 400 miles (645 km) to modern day Cairo across desert and water.

The ancient Egyptians didn’t build roads to travel around their empire as they didn’t need them, thanks to the Nile.

Most major cities were located along the banks of the iconic river.

As a result, they used it for transportation from very early on, becoming experts at boat building and navigation.

Boats used to carry huge stones weighing as much as 500 tons from rock quarries to pyramid building site

These would have been shipped around 400 miles (645 km) to modern day Cairo across desert and water.

The ancient Egyptians didn’t build roads to travel around their empire as they didn’t need them, thanks to the Nile.

Most major cities were located along the banks of the iconic river.

As a result, they used it for transportation from very early on, becoming experts at boat building and navigation.

The embossed gold relics were found by his team in the very same crate in which they were placed in 1922 after the famed find by British archaeologist Howard Carter

THE BIZARRE BURIAL OF KING TUT

Researchers from the American University in Cairo believe the king’s appendage was embalmed at a 90-degree angle to make the young pharaoh appear as Osiris, the god of the underworld.

The angling of the penis was a feature worn by ‘corn-mummies’, created in honour of Osiris.

The mummy was also covered in black liquid to resemble Osiris’ skin.

Elsewhere, Tutankhamun’s heart was missing when the tomb was discovered by Howard Carter in 1922.

Religious texts claimed Osiris’ heart was similarly removed by his brother Seth.On the outside of the tomb, decorations depicted Tutankhamun as Osiris.

At first they were long, thin and made of papyrus plant, and were steered with oars and poles.

But eventually bigger cargo ships made of wood, acacia from Egypt and imported cedar from Lebanon were built, with sails jutting from the middle and a large rudder at the back.

The Egyptians sailed these ships up and down the Nile and into the Mediterranean Sea to trade with other countries.

Some were used to carry huge stones weighing as much as 500 tons from rock quarries to pyramid building sites.

The restored artefacts can now be seen at a special exhibition at the Egyptian Museum, which opened on Wednesday.

Professor Pfalzner said similar artefacts with images along a comparable theme were found in a tomb in the Syrian Royal city of Qatna.

There, his team discovered a pristine king’s grave in 2002. It dates back to the time of around 1340 BC, just a bit older than King Tut’s tomb dating back to 1323 BC.

The restored artefacts can now be seen at a special exhibition at the Egyptian Museum, which opened on Wednesday

Prof Pfalzner said: ‘This remarkable aspect provided the impetus for our project on the Egyptian finds.

‘Now, we need to solve the riddle of how the foreign motifs on the embossed gold applications came to be adopted in Egypt.’

He said chemical analyses has been illuminating.

As well as showing the incredible craftsmanship in ancient Egypt, the researchers believe that the bed also provides an insight into the aspirations of King Tut

Almost 100 decorative fittings for bow cases, quivers and bridles were transported hundreds of miles to be placed in King Tutankhamen’s tomb in Egypt’s Valley of the Kings

‘The results showed the embossed gold applications with Egyptian motifs and the others with foreign motifs were made of gold of differing compositions.

‘That does not necessarily mean the pieces were imported. It may be various local workshops were responsible for producing objects in various styles – and that one used Near Eastern models.’

He added that, almost a century after they were discovered, the scientific analysis of these artefacts from one of Egypt’s most sensational archaeological finds has finally been completed.

Related Posts

Unveiling the Secrets: A Rare Glimpse Inside the Grand Egyptian Museum, Home to Tutankhamun’s Sealed Coffin and Priceless Ancient Treasures

OVER 5,000 Tutankhamun artefacts will be on display at the new Grand Egyptian Museum (GEM) later this year. We took a look behind the scenes of the…

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *