I wanted to be an archaeologist from the time I was about 12 years old.
Tutankhamun, the boy-king of Egypt, came to my house sometime in the 60’s in the form of a book with full-color photos of the excavations. Tutankhamun’s death mask to the right was on the cover of the book my father had purchased. I was instantly hooked. Devoured the book. And that was that – I was going to be an archaeologist. But that’s another story.
Howard Carter was a British archaeologist who discovered the untouched tomb in 1922. By 1929, 11 members of Howard Carter’s excavating team had died, including Lord Carnarvon, the financial backer of the expedition. This was the inspiration for all the Curse of the Mummy movies.
It was rare even in 1922 to find an Egyptian tomb that hadn’t already been plundered by tomb-raiders. The wax bust above was done by a French team that specializes in facial reconstruction. What do you think? I think his chin is a little weak, myself.
This boy-king lived 3,000 years ago. When the tomb was opened for the first time, the glint of “gold, gold, everywhere gold..” stunned the observers.
It is said that when the sarcophagus was opened, a circlet of faded blue cornflowers around the mummy’s neck still gave off a faint perfume.