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Cappadocia, Kirbet Kerak, and the mystery of the Tutankhamun mummy

31 December 2014

A new underground city has been found in Cappadocia, in the eastern part of what is modern Turkey – see www.hurriyetdailynews.com/massive-ancient-underground-city-discovered-in…?

An early urban centre near the Sea of Galilee is being explored by archaeologists. This is Kirbet Kerak, a city that dates back at least as far as 3000BC. It was contemporary with the Old Kingdom of Egypt, with links even as early as dynasty One.

Kirbet Kerak is also famous for its pottery which is found all over the ancient Levant, Egypt, and further afield – even in the Transcaucasus. Therefore there is a direct link between this part of the Levant and Armenia – in the ancient world. It was occupied throughout the Early Bronze Age – and periodically thereafter. At an intermediate point in the Early Bronze, the Kirbet Kerak wares turn up, brought by newcomers – from the north. Were they refugees from some sort of disaster? See www.popular-archaeology.com/issue/winter-01012015/article/archaeologists…

Over at www.smithsonianmag.com/history/controversial-afterlife-king-tut-180953400/ … is an interesting read as it comprises some of the conflicting ideas from recent separate studies of the remains of Tutankhamun. Unlike the funeral objects found in the tomb, the actual mummy was in poor condition. Resin and ointments had congealed and the body had to be prised out of the coffin. The prize, it would seem, was the gold rings and amulets – and the golden face mask. In the process limbs were yanked apartand a knife was used to slice the burial mask away from the head. The presence of the gold objects led to an abuse of the archaeology – and the mystery remains. How did Tutankhamun die? In spite of all the scientific studies so far the question is wide open – still.

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