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The golden sarcophagus of King Tutankhamun.
Reuters/ Mohamed Abd El Ghany
Tutankhamun could have been buried in a tomb meant for a queen.
FIT FOR A QUEEN?

Radar points to a hidden chamber in king Tutankhamun’s tomb

By Olivia Goldhill

Egyptian officials believe they have found a hidden chamber—the possible resting place of queen Nefertiti—alongside king Tutankhamun’s tomb.

The Egyptian government gave permission for the Antiques ministry to conduct infrared scans of the tomb in September, after British archeologist Nicholas Reeves argued that Tutankhamun was buried in an outer chamber of Nefertiti’s tomb.

And in a press conference yesterday (Nov. 28), Egyptian officials said they were “approximately 90% sure” they had found a hidden chamber, and that the scans had been sent to Japan for further analysis, according to AFP.

“The radar, behind the north wall [of Tutankhamun’s burial chamber] seems pretty clear. If I am right it is a continuation—corridor continuation—of the tomb, which will end in another burial chamber,” said Reeves, a professor of archaeology at the University of Arizona, at the conference. “I think it is Nefertiti and all the evidence points in that direction.”

Though Tutankhamun’s tomb was a magnificent archaeological find, containing around 2,000 objects, it’s far smaller than other Egyptian kings’ tombs. Reeves believes this is because the 19-year-old died unexpectedly and was hurriedly buried in the chamber of a tomb meant for Nefertiti.

“If I’m wrong, I’m wrong,” Reeves has previously said of his theory. “But if I’m right, the prospects are frankly staggering. The world will have become a much more interesting place—at least for Egyptologists.”

However, Reeves’ work has not yet been submitted to a peer-review journal, and other Egyptologists dispute his theory. Egypt’s antiques minister Mamduh al-Damati believes that the chamber could be the resting place of Kiya, the woman who became pharaoh Akhenaten’s wife after Nefertiti. Others believe the room could contain objects, or simply be empty.