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VR screenshot of one of the tomb’s images.

Would You Like to Tour the Tomb of Nefertari? Grab Your VR Headset and Explore!

Have you ever wished you could be guided through a beautifully preserved ancient Egyptian tomb? This is a dream for many people, however advances in virtual reality (VR) can help you get one giant step closer to the real experience. QV 66, the marvelous tomb of Queen Nefertari, has just recently been brought to VR life in stunning detail – providing you with a personal tour of the famous tomb from your own home.

Screenshot from VR of Nefertari’s tomb. Source: CuriosityStream

PR Newswire reports that the VR experience is called “Nefertari: Journey to Eternity” and is the brainchild of CuriosityStream. The experience provides students and adults with the chance to explore a 3D version of the ancient Egyptian tomb of Queen Nefertari alongside an Egyptologist. The expert gives the viewer insight on various elements of the decoration found in the tomb.

Nefertari’s tomb is one of the largest in the Valley of the Queens. (Image: CuriosityStream)

Nefertari’s tomb is one of the largest in the Valley of the Queens. (Image: CuriosityStream)

Nefertari: Journey to Eternity ” is a VR experience in which people using an HTC Vive VR headset can interact with different elements of the beautiful murals of the tomb and learn more about the images shown on them. You can also see everything in great detail because the tomb has been filmed with millimeter accuracy.

The content is available on STEAM and also Viveport (VIVE’s store) for viewing with the VR headset. The STEAM description for the experience provides this concise explanation:

“In Egypt's legendary Valley of the Queens lies Queen Nefertari's tomb, one of the modern world's most detailed windows into ancient Egyptians' journey towards the afterlife. Now, state-of-the-art technology has made it possible to digitally scan Nefertari's tomb with millimeter accuracy. For the first time ever, step inside the fabled tomb and immerse yourself in the story of its art, history, construction, and mythology through interactive elements.”

Screenshot of “Nefertari: Journey to Eternity.” (CuriosityStream)

Screenshot of “Nefertari: Journey to Eternity.” ( CuriosityStream)

Nefertari’s tomb is arguably one of the most beautifully decorated ancient Egyptian tombs found to date. Ernesto Schiaparelli, a director of the Egyptian Museum in Turin, has been credited with the tomb’s discovery in 1904.

It is commonly said that Queen Nefertari’s tomb is one of the most striking and largest tombs found in the Valley of the Queens. The tomb’s murals focus primarily on scenes from her life and death. Her beauty was emphasized in the artistic depiction of her eyes, cheeks, and eyebrows.

Unfortunately, much of the tomb’s treasures had been looted by the time Schiaparelli encountered it and it was in dire need for conservation work. Some of the artifacts that escaped the looters’ fingers are: a pair of sandals, about 30 ushabti figures, several scarabs, a fragment of a gold bracelet, and the sarcophagus. Only her knees have been found ; the rest of the mummy has been lost.

The exquisite interior of Nefertari’s tomb has been restored. (Image: CuriosityStream)

OSIRISNET explains that Nefertari was a wife of Ramesses II. Her full name was Nefertari Meritmut – meaning 'beautiful companion, Beloved of [the goddess] Mut.' Her husband seemed to have preferred her over his other wives . This can be seen in his poetic declarations which say she was “the one for whom the sun shines,” and “My love is unique — no one can rival her, for she is the most beautiful woman alive. Just by passing, she has stolen away my heart.”

Nefertari. (Public Domain)

Nefertari. ( Public Domain )

This queen lived during ancient Egypt’s 19th Dynasty and used her rare skills in reading and writing hieroglyphs to diplomatic ends. Apart from her magnificent tomb, Nefertari’s importance is also demonstrated by the consistent presence of her image beside Ramesses II’s and through the temple her husband had built for her near his colossal monument at Abu Simbel.

Right side of Nefertari’s temple at Abu Simbel. (Steve F-E-Cameron/CC BY SA 3.0)

Right side of Nefertari’s temple at Abu Simbel. (Steve F-E-Cameron/ CC BY SA 3.0 )

Top Image: VR screenshot of one of the tomb’s images. (Image: CuriosityStream)​

By Alicia McDermott

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