Friday, August 18, 2006

Dig Days: Secrets from the embalming storeroom

Another curious piece about the internal politics within the KV63 team, from Zahi Hawass in his Dig Days column on the Al Ahram Weekly website: "Zahi HawassExcavations continue in the Valley of the Kings inside tomb KV63, which has now been identified as a storage place for embalming materials. The little curse of this tomb continues. In a previous article, I told the story of this remarkable discovery and the fight between the two Egyptologists Otto Shaden and Lorilei Cocron, who both wanted to be director of the excavation. Since that article was published many things have happened. Cocron came back to Egypt from Memphis and wanted to take photographs of the excavation. Shaden, as the official director according to the concession, prevented her from doing so. Mansour Boraik, director of Luxor antiquities, told me that Cocron had been seen sobbing in the valley. I do not know what we can do to resolve this problem but I believe we must encourage them both to finish their work, because the wood is deteriorating and they still have two coffins (one for an adult and one for a child) that have not been opened. Shaden wanted to leave the excavation for 10 days while he presented a talk at the American Research Center in New Jersey, and planned to close the excavation because he would not be there. I thought this might be dangerous because the work should have continued and conservation needed to be done."
See the above page for the full feature.

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