KV60

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Coordinates: 25°44′27″N 32°36′8″E / 25.74083°N 32.60222°E / 25.74083; 32.60222

KV60
Burial site of
Sitre In and Hatshepsut
Location East Valley of the Kings
Discovered 1903
Excavated by Howard Carter
Edward R. Ayrton
Donald P. Ryan
Previous
KV59
Next
KV61

Tomb KV60 in Egypt's Valley of the Kings is one of the more perplexing tombs of the Theban Necropolis, due to the uncertainty over the identity of one female mummy found there (KV60A), thought by some, such as the noted Egyptologist Elizabeth Thomas, to be that of 18th dynasty Pharaoh Hatshepsut.[1] This identification has recently been advocated by Egyptologist Zahi Hawass. [2]

History[edit]

Large granite sphinx bearing the likeness of the female pharaoh Hatshepsut, who in June 2007 was proven to be one of the occupants of KV60(Metropolitan Museum of Art)

When the tomb was discovered by Howard Carter in 1903, it was found to have been ransacked and desecrated in antiquity, but still held two mummies, along with some badly damaged grave goods; Carter apparently did little work in the tomb.

In 1906 Edward R. Ayrton reopened it, and removed one mummy, KV60B, together with the coffin it was in, to the Egyptian Museum. The coffin was inscribed with the name and title royal nurse, In. This personage has been widely identified with Sit-Ra, called In, who was the royal nurse of Hatshepsut. Since neither Carter nor Ayrton drew plans or maps indicating the location of the tomb, the whereabouts of the tomb became forgotten.

Thomas later (in 1966) speculated that the second (unidentified) mummy was that of Hatshepsut, relocated there (to the tomb of her nurse) by Thutmose III, as part of his campaign of official hostility towards her.

In 1990 the tomb was rediscovered, reopened and properly excavated by a team led by Donald P. Ryan and Mark Papworth. This produced evidence both in favour of, and casting doubt on, Thomas' theory. On the supporting side, the mummy proved to be that of a relatively elderly lady, with her left arm flexed in the pose thought to mark a royal mummy. On the other hand, none of the pottery fragments recovered during the excavation could be dated to the 18th Dynasty. Most interestingly, a wooden face-piece from a coffin possibly destined for a male (it seemingly had a place to fit a false beard) was found – but the tomb contained only females, and Hatshepsut is known to have used the false beard. The mummy was placed in a new wooden coffin, and left in the tomb, which was resealed.

In early 2007, the tomb was reopened and the second mummy, KV60A, removed for testing. On 27 June 2007, Supreme Council of Antiquities director Zahi Hawass offered what he considered to be definitive proof that this "corpulent, elderly" body was indeed Hatshepsut.[2] The mummy was found by CT scan to have one root of a missing molar. An unopened canopic box bearing the royal name of Hapshetsut was found by CT scan to contain a molar with one root missing. The size and shape of the root remaining in the mummy fits the molar in the canopic box.

Isometric, plan and elevation images of KV60 taken from a 3d model

References[edit]

Notes

  1. ^ Highfield, Roger (27 June 2007). "How I found Queen Hatshepsut". Daily Telegraph (London). Retrieved 2007-06-30. [dead link]
  2. ^ a b "Search for Hatshepsut". 

Further reading

  • Nicholas Reeves and Richard H. Wilkinson, The Complete Valley of the Kings (Thames & Hudson, 1996) pp. 186–187.
  • Donald P. Ryan, "Who is buried in KV60", KMT 1:1, 1990.
  • Siliotti, A. Guide to the Valley of the Kings and to the Theban Necropolises and Temples, 1996, A.A. Gaddis, Cairo.

External links[edit]