Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

British Archaeologist May Have Discovered Queen Nefertiti's Tomb

Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

British Archaeologist May Have Discovered Queen Nefertiti's Tomb

Article excerpt

Although Nefertiti was a powerful and influential Egyptian queen with one of the most recognizable profiles in history, archaeologists have never found her tomb.

But in a paper published last month, an English Egyptologist has suggested her lost grave could rest in a familiar place - just beyond a wall in King Tutankhamun's tomb in Egypt's Valley of the Kings.

Nicholas Reeves, an archaeologist specializing in ancient Egyptian history and a recent visiting scholar at the University of Arizona, said if his theory is correct, the historical significance of such a discovery would be "incalculable."

"To find the tomb of an Egyptian king or queen, it's the dream of all Egyptologists if we're honest with each other," he said in a phone interview this week from the United Kingdom. "To find the last resting place of somebody like Nefertiti is quite extraordinary."

Mr. Reeves' theory came after months of studying a facsimile of the tomb of 14th century BC pharaoh Tutankhamun, published online early last year by Factum Arte, an art-replication specialist based in Madrid. Some experts have speculated that Queen Nefertiti was King Tut's mother.

High-resolution scans detailing the surface of the walls reveal what Mr. Reeves called the "ghosts" of two previously unrecognized doorways leading to a storage room to the left of King Tut's tomb and, according to his belief, the undiscovered burial site of its original owner, Nefertiti, behind it.

Archaeologists have long posited that King Tut's tomb, discovered in 1922 by Egyptologist Howard Carter, was too small for a king of ancient Egypt's 18th Dynasty. Mr. Reeves argues that when Nefertiti was buried, the space wasn't intended to serve as the same tomb for King Tut, but when the boy king unexpectedly died 10 years later, and without a burial chamber yet prepared, Nefertiti's was reopened and enlarged for him. …

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