Friday, December 09, 2005

Celebrating the birthday of Tutankhamun

"As 2005 drew towards a close, the Egyptian Museum in Tahrir Square celebrated the 83rd anniversary of the discovery of Tutankhamun's tomb with a gala party. This featured the opening of a landmark exhibition of 50 black and white photographs portraying the legendary discovery in 1922. The photographs, which are courtesy of the Grift Institute, Oxford, show British explorer Howard Carter at various stages of the discovery; entering the intact tomb, brushing the sand of Tut's golden sarcophagus, examining the golden mask and precious amulets decorating the mummy while a young Nubian child listens to his explanations, and walking through the Valley of the Kings with Lord Carnarvon, who funded Carter's excavations in Egypt. Portraits of Carnarvon and Carter are also on show in the exhibition, along with copies of Carter's birth and death certificates. Photographs of Tutankhamun's collection of treasures, seen piled on one side of the tomb on the day of the discovery, were also on show.

As part of the celebrations Zahi Hawass announced a new museum: "During his lecture Hawass announced that Carter's house on the Luxor West Bank would be converted into a museum to demonstrate how the great archaeologist lived while searching indefatigably for Tutankhamun's tomb".

For more details about the exhibition in Cairo, as well as a detailed description of the Golden Age of Pharaohs exhibition at Fort Lauderdale, see the above article on the Al Ahram Weekly website.

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