Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Tomb of Tutankhamun to close

Many thanks to Amigos de la Egiptologia for these links.

El Pais (Jacinto Anton)

Zahi Hawass, head of the Supreme Council of Antiquities, has announced that the tomb of Tutankhamun will be closed in order to prevent ongoing deterioration caused by mass tourism. It will join two other well known tombs - those of Seti I and Nefertari. The decision to place the remains of Tutankhamun within his tomb is thought to have added to the appeal of the tomb and increased the number of tourists visiting the small tomb and adding to the probelm. It has not been made clear exactly when the tomb will be closed. It is thought that a replica of the tomb may be created.

Una de las mayores atracciones turísticas y arqueológicas del mundo cerrará sus viejas puertas en breve, probablemente para siempre. El responsable de antigüedades de Egipto, Zahi Hawass , anunció ayer en unas declaraciones a Efe que va a echar el candado en la tumba de Tutankamón, la más visitada del valle de los Reyes, la gran necrópolis faraónica de la antigua Tebas (actual Luxor), para evitar que prosiga su imparable deterioro a causa del turismo masivo.

La Vanguardia

This article adds that laser scans have been used to capture images from the three tombs and that the "valley of the replicas" is expected to be opened within two months. It is unclear if tourists will be drawn to visit replicas of the tombs or if the project will deter visitors. Hawass is hoping that the Lascaux experience in France, where the tourist numbers did not fall when a replica of the prehistoric cave was created, will be mirrored in Egypt.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I am not suprised by the action.Eventually more tombs will be closed. Tombs were meant to be sealed forever and not opened. Understandable but of course sad for those who would want to see them.