King Tut’s tomb was discovered almost a century ago, but it turns out we still have some exploring to do.
Earlier this week, Egypt’s antiquities minister Mamdouh el-Damaty proclaimed that the King’s tomb may contain hidden chambers–and a queen could be buried behind those 3,300-year-old walls. Yes, Indiana Joneses of the world are jumping with joy right now–heck, we are too.
The theory was proposed by British Egyptologist Nicholas Reeves. He believes since Tutankhamun died so young, at the age of 19, he was rushed into the burial chambers of another–the other being Queen Nefertiti herself, whose famous bust (pictured below) is currently on display in Germany.
High-resolution images show that there are two plastered walls in his tomb–walls that look like they weren’t a part of the original build. But experts disagree on who’s buried behind the secret walls. Reeves believes it’s the famed Nefertiti, the Great Royal Wife of the Pharaoh Akhenaten (who’s believed to Tut’s father), but Minister el-Damaty says it’s could be Kiya, one of Akhenaten’s other wives.
“Egypt basically fell apart under Akhenaten [and his family] and it was the military that pulled it all together again,” Reeves said to the Associated Press, adding that Egyptians wiped out Tut’s name from official records of pharaohs.
It’s all clearly very complicated and so let’s break it down; Sometime around Akhenaten’s death, Nefertiti disappears from all records and the kingdom was ruled by someone named Smenkhkare, who little is known of, for a short while. Subsequently, King Tut took over. Now Reeves’ explanation is that Nefertiti didn’t disappear at all; instead, she just changed her name to Smenkhkare, and simply ruled over Egypt until she died.
How insane is that? Here’s hoping they find something soon because we really can’t contain our excitement.