Spanish Leak Reveals Hidden Chamber in Tutankhamun Tomb is Full of Treasures
The Tourism Minister of Egypt Hisham Zaazou may have slipped up during a recent visit to Spain when he revealed startling information about the investigations into a hidden chamber in Tutankhamun’s tomb ahead of official press announcements due to take place in April. Zaazou said that the hidden chamber has been found to be full of treasures and will be the ‘Big Bang’ of the 21st century.
According to the Spanish National daily newspaper, ABC, Zaazou made the sensational claims during a visit to Spain a few weeks ago.
"We do not know if the burial chamber is Nefertiti or another woman, but it is full of treasures," said Zaazou [via ABC] … “It will be a ‘Big Bang’, the discovery of the 21st Century".
Investigations in Tutankhamun’s Tomb
The Ministry of Antiquities in Egypt launched high-tech analyses within the boy king’s tomb on November 4 after initial infrared scans of the walls of Tutankhamun’s tomb detected an area of greater heat, pointing to the presence of a hidden chamber.
The scans were designed to test out the theory by archaeologist Nicholas Reeves that the tomb of Tutankhamun contains two hidden chambers and that one of them is the final resting place of Queen Nefertiti. According to the Minister, the scans showed a 90 per cent likelihood that there was something behind the walls.
Nicholas Reeves first suspected hidden chambers in Tutankhamun’s tomb following a detailed examination of the Factum Arte scans of the artistic works on the walls of the tomb. Reeves noticed fissures that he thought indicated the presence of two sealed doors in the tomb’s north and west walls.
- Press Announcement: Radar Scans Reveal Hidden Chamber in Tutankhamun Tomb with 90 Percent Certainty
- Excitement Mounts as New Infrared Scan in Tomb of Tutankhamun Suggests Hidden Chamber
Scans of the north wall of King Tutankhamun's burial chamber have revealed features beneath the intricately decorated plaster (highlighted) a researcher believes may be a hidden door, possibly to the burial chamber of Nefertiti. Credit: Factum Arte.
What lies within the secret chamber?
According to Reeves, King Tutankhamun’s tomb was unfinished when he died unexpectedly as a teenager in 1332 BC. Consequently, he was hastily buried in the tomb of Queen Nefertiti, the principal wife of Akhenaten, who is believed to have fathered Tutankhamun with another wife. Reeves believes that Tutankhamun’s tomb displaced part of Nefertiti's tomb and assumed some of her burial goods and space.
However, Egypt’s Minister of Antiquities al-Damati believes otherwise. According to Agence France Press, Damati believes that any mummy buried in Tutankhamun’s tomb would be more likely to be Kiya, a wife of the pharaoh Akhenaten.
During his visit, Zaazou said there was also a theory that the chamber would be completely empty. However, he asserted that this has now been proven false. “It is not empty. It is full of treasures,” the minister said [via ABC]. “It will be an historic moment.”
- Kiya - The Most Mysterious Woman of Amarna
- The Mysterious Disappearance of Nefertiti, Ruler of the Nile
- The Elusive Tomb of Queen Nefertiti may lie behind the walls of Tutankhamun's Burial Chamber
Image showing the location of the two chambers from Dr. Reeves report. The upcoming radar scan will search for their existence. (Daily Mail)
Nile Magazine has questioned why Hisham Zaazou would abandon protocol to reveal such massive news prior to the official press announcements, which are due to take place in April.
“Of course, a cynical person could be forgiven for wondering why, in a government that is a stickler for protocol, the Tourism Minister was revealing such massive news rather than the Minister for Antiquities. It does seem remarkable that Mr. Zaazou has been so loose-lipped. Or could it be that the Minister is largely bluffing, hoping for a much-needed tourism boost?” questions Nile Magazine.
“However it is curious that the British Egyptologist who started all this, Nicholas Reeves, is currently in Luxor. Thankfully we don't have to wait all that long to find out. April will be here before we know it.”
Featured image: The stone sarcophagus containing the mummy of King Tut is seen in his underground tomb. Credit: Nasser Nuri.