Pictures

Akhenaten?

By Jacqueline Engel

Details of the coffin found in Valley of the Kings tomb KV 55.

Inside was believed to be the mummy of the heretic King Akhenaten.

The tomb, like the king it contained, is controversial and only made worse by its poor excavation by men who were capable of doing a much more professional job.

Add to the mess no photographs appeared to have been taken during the taking apart of the mummy found in this most outstanding royal coffin that had been found up to that time.

The missing cartouche inlay down the center of the lid was likely a jewel made of carnelian or glass to match the color scheme of the coffin. This inlay was not violently hacked at and likely was not destroyed during its removal. Instead, it appears to have been popped out with a sharp instrument which may have left its mark in the wood on the upper right side of the slot creating no damage to the delicate surrounding inlays.

Egyptian Museum Caïro

Two years of DNA testing and CAT scans on 16 royal mummies conducted by Egypt’s Supreme Council of Antiquities, however, gave the firmest evidence to date that an unidentified mummy – known as KV55, after the number of the tomb where it was found in 1907 in Egypt’s Valley of the Kings – is Akhenaten’s.

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