The Search for Queen Nefertiti

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About 400 miles from the Great Pyramids lies the Valley of Kings, where the Ancient Egyptians buried their royalty. There are many treasures buried here, but scientists are on the hunt for one in particular: the mummy of King Tut’s stepmother, Queen Nefertiti. In the 19th century explorers discovered a chamber containing two mummies. One of these was identified as King Tut’s wife Ankhesenamun, and since Nefertiti was her mother, the scientists believe the other Mummy may be the elusive queen herself.

But how can they tell who someone is thousands of years after their death? By using cool new technology like CT scans (a special type of x-ray that allows you to look at cross-sections of the body instead of one 2D image) and DNA tests. By using this technology, scientists have been able to solve other mummy mysteries as well. By carefully analyzing images from the CT scan of King Tut, they discovered that he did not die of a head injury like previously believed. In fact, it is more likely that he died of a bad knee fracture (ouch!), and had a foot deformity that forced him to walk with a cane.

Although researchers haven’t been able to confirm yet if the mystery mummy is Queen Nefertiti, hopefully by using new advances in technology we will soon learn more about the life and death of this mysterious lady.

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Jan 4, 2016

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