So far, archeologists have not been able to find the place of burial of Nefertiti, Egyptian queen, considered as one of most beautiful women in the history.
Anticipation of the sensation – According to Nicholas Reeves, underground burial site of Pharaoh Tutankhamun is a luxurious crypt, which has been preserved almost intact to the present day, has some secrets. British Egyptologist suggests that behind one of the walls of the “KV62” tomb there are still unknown tombs. In one of them scientist hopes to discover the mummy of Nefertiti.
Disappearance without a trace – Nefertiti was, according to a hypothesis, the stepmother of Tutankhamun, so her burial in the tomb of her adopted son is not impossible. Although, until now, scientists could not find any trace of the final resting place of the queen, whom world knows by sculptural images of the Egyptian Museum of Berlin.
With help of modern equipment – Minister of Antiquities of Egypt Mamdouh El Damato (second from left) and Nicolas Reeves (second from right) visited the burial site of the Pharaohs in Luxor on 29th of September. British scientist received permission to perform studies in the Valley of the Kings in Egypt. Those include examination with help of a special radar to test the theory of the existence of Nefertiti’s secret tomb in the burial site of Tutankhamun.
Burial site KV62 – Tutankhamun governed ancient Egypt in the XIV century BC and died at the age of 19 years. His tomb was found in 1922 by British Egyptologist Howard Carter (pictured) and amateur archaeologist Lord Carnarvon. Burial remained almost untouched by robbers, in contrast to many other tombs of the pharaohs in the Valley of the Kings in Egypt.
So far, only an assumption – Presence of 19-year-old Pharaoh and existence of hidden doors leading to other rooms does not necessarily mean that the queen Nefertiti is guarded there. However, Nicholas Reeves, an experienced specialist in the history of ancient Egypt, is confident that his hypothesis is right and that he will find the body of the ancient queen.
“City of the Dead” in the desert – Pyramids have been constructed from ages of Old Kingdom to those of Middle Kingdom, and despite their size, were unable to resist robbers. Therefore, the pharaohs of the New Kingdom Dynasty XVIII changed the place and method of burial. Since the days of Thutmose I, Egyptian pharaohs have been buried in the desert, in a valley at the foot of the mountains to the west of Thebes (now Luxor). In 1979, the Valley of the Kings was included in the UNESCO World Heritage list.
Akhenaten and Nefertiti – Tutankhamun was the son of Amenhotep IV, who has taken the name Akhenaten during religious reform to abolish polytheism in ancient Egypt. He introduced a worship centered on the Aten, the disk of the sun in ancient Egyptian mythology and originally an aspect of the god Ra. The quartz bust on the photo for a long time has been considered the image of Akhenaten. By now scientists have proved that it is the portrayal of his wife Nefertiti.
The royal family – It has been proven that Nefertiti played an extremely important role in the religious life of Ancient Egypt. She accompanied her husband during sacrifices and religious festivals. The love of the royal couple has been one of the main subjects of artists. They portrayed them openly show their feelings and even kissing.
Coming of beautiful – Legends say that Egypt had never spawned such beauty. Her name means “Beautiful has come.” Nefertiti has been considered a living embodiment of the life-giving power of the sun. But the queen didn’t have a son, an heir to the throne, which may have led to the deterioration of relations within the royal family.
The “second birth” of Nefertiti – The famous bust of Nefertiti was discovered on December 6, 1912 during excavations in the Egyptian Amarna settlement, in the ruins of the ancient city Akhetaten built by Pharaoh Akhenaten. Bust was found in the workshop of the sculptor Thutmose, and has been well preserved in a layer of sand. According to archeologists, the estimated age of the sculptural portrait of the beautiful queen is at least three thousand years. Since, 1913 the treasure has been kept in Berlin.
The sponsor of excavations – Archeological expedition, which has been lucky to find the bust of Nefertiti, had been led by the German named Ludwig Borchardt. But a key role in the fate of Nefertiti’s bust, one of the most famous exhibits in the world, belongs to James Simon, a wealthy Prussian merchant and passionate art lover, who has been depicted in a recently filmed documentary.
100 years in Berlin – James Simon sponsored archeological excavations in Egypt, which resulted in Nefertiti’s bust’s discovery. The treasure has been exported from Egypt and for some time has been kept at Simon’s villa. He decided to order two copies of the bust. One he kept for himself, the other one presented to the Kaiser, while the original has been conveyed to the art collection of the Prussian royal house, eventually coming to be in Berlin.
Plastic surgery? – It has been discovered that the bust of Nefertiti kept in Berlin had been subject to “plastic surgery”. As demonstrated by computed tomography sculpture, held in 2007 at the Berlin Institute of Visual Studies (Berliner Imaging Science Institute), sculpture bears traces of late intervention.
The standard of beauty – It is still unknown whether the original image of Nefertiti is glossed over or simply is corrected to become more similar to the original. It can be proven only by studying the mummy of Nefertiti itself. Once, of course, it is found.