History Of The Egyptian King Tut

King Tut was just nine years old when he became a pharaoh in ancient Egypt, and he was only eighteen when he was murdered.

King Tut was a pharaoh in the 18th dynasty of ancient Egypt. He became the next King after Akenhaten at the age of nine. Because of his youth and inexperience, Commander Aye, who was his uncle as well as his private advisor, actually made the important decisions for him. One of the decisions Aye made was to return polytheism to Egypt. Polytheism is basically the belief in gods and goddesses. The cults of the god, Amen, as well as others, were revived.

Because of this change, King Tut, whose full name was actually Tutankhaten, changed his name to Tutankhamen. While his name had meant, "living image of Aten", his new name meant "living image of Amen." The young King also moved to Memphis, which was located near what we know as being Cairo today, and he lived in his father's Theban palace.

King Tut's short rule ended just nine years later, when he was just eighteen years old. The cause of his death is still questioned today, but it is assumed that he was murdered because he died from a blow to the skull.

The Egyptians looked upon their Kings as being gods; gods who would go on to have an after life. So, when King Tut died, his body was immediately, preserved by a method of embalming, and then it was mummified. King Tut's mummy was placed inside three coffins, one smaller than the next; the smallest coffin was made of solid gold. The outer two coffins were constructed of wooden frames with gold hammered over them. The coffins were finally placed inside a stone sarcophagus. The Golden Death Mask was placed over the boy's head, and valuables were place on the mummified body as well as inside the wrappings. The other rooms of the tomb were filled with the Golden Throne, a wooden war chest, furniture, a chariot, weapons, and other things that the Egyptians thought King Tut would need in his after life. The tomb was then sealed for protection, especially from robbers.

Since the tombs of the Kings were filled with many riches, that made them a prime target for robbers; the tombs were commonly broken into and the treasures stolen. The Egyptians did everything they could to thwart the robbers, such as placing heavy rocks at the doorways, and building false doorways and hidden rooms. Sometimes, even a curse was written on the entrance of the tomb in an effort to discourage intruders.

Robbers once disturbed King Tut's small tomb, but they were caught during the act, and the tomb remained intact until 1922. An English archaeologist by the name of Howard Carter became interested in the tombs of Egypt. Several tombs had been found, but they had long since been robbed of their precious valuables. Carter, though, was sure that there was one tomb that had never been found, and it belonged to the boy-Pharaoh, King Tut.

Carter arrived in Egypt in 1891, and he, along with his crews, began their search for the lost tomb. The Valley of the Kings, which is located on the Nile River, was the prime burial grounds for the kings during the eighteenth and nineteenth dynasties.

By 1922, after Carter had been digging for several years, Lord Carnarvon of England, who was backing Carter financially, decided to halt the search. Up to this time, Carter had found nothing, and the search seemed useless. But, the archaeologist was able to convince Lord Carnarvon to give him more time, and Carter returned to Egypt for one last try.

Later that same year, Howard Carter's crew finally did uncover a tomb, and on its doorway was the name Tutankhamen. Legend has it that that the tomb was cursed, and the words, "Death Shall Come on Swift Wings To Him Who Disturbs the Peace of the King..." were found on the outer doorway. Truth or not, Carter didn't believe in such things as curses, and he telegrammed Lord Carnarvon to come to Egypt immediately. The lost "Treasure of King Tut" had been found.

A short time later, Lord Carnarvon died from an infection, and by 1935, twenty-one people who had been connected with the tomb's discovery had died. Even though the curse cannot be found written anywhere in the tomb today, these deaths were thought to be caused by the curse of the mummy. Howard Carter, on the other hand, lived to be sixty-six years of age, and he died of natural causes.

Was there actually a curse placed on anyone who disturbed the tomb of the boy-king named Tut? Or was the curse nothing more than superstitious hype? No one will ever know for sure.

Today, King Tut's tomb has the honor of being the only burial place in the Valley of the Kings where the mummy is still there. And this is only because the body cannot be removed, as it would disintegrate into dust.

© High Speed Ventures 2011