First Published: 2007-06-26

Mummy of Hatshepsut identified

Discovery Channel says finding Hatshepsut mummy one of most important finds in history of Egypt.


Middle East Online

By Alain Navarro - CAIRO

Hatshepsut; powerful female monarch of the ancient world

The centuries-old search for the mummy of Queen Hatshepsut, the only woman to have reigned as a pharaoh in Egypt, may finally have ended.

According to US-based Discovery Channel, Egypt's antiquities supremo Zahi Hawass will announce at a media conference in Cairo on Wednesday "the most important find in Egypt's Valley of the Kings since the discovery of Tutankhamun" in 1922.

In 1903, archaeologist Howard Carter -- who went on to become famous for his discovery of Tutankhamun-- had discovered two sarcophogi in a tomb known as KV60 in the Theban necropolis, the Valley of the Kings in Luxor.

One apparently contained the mummy of Hatshepsut's wet nurse Sitre-In and the other of an unknown female.

Later in 1920, he found the tomb of Queen Hatshepsut but the two sarcophogi it contained were empty.

Discovery Channel, which is to air a documentary about the find, said Hawass was able to narrow the search for Hatshepsut down to the two mummies discovered by Carter in 1903.

He used CT scans to produce detailed 3D images and link distinct physical traits of one of the mummies to that of her ancestors.

Hawass, secretary general of Egypt's Supreme Council of Antiquities, declined to comment, but Discovery quoted him as confirming the breakthrough.

"The discovery of the Hatshepsut mummy is one of the most important finds in the history of Egypt," the channel quoted him as saying.

"Our hope is that this mummy will help shed light on this mystery and on the mysterious nature of her death."

Discovery said a team of archaeologists would now carry out DNA testing on the 3,000 year-old mummy to confirm her identity.

Hatshepsut, daughter of Pharaoh Tuthmosis I who ruled from 1504-1484 BC, was one of the most powerful female monarchs of the ancient world.

After the death of her husband-brother Tuthmosis II, she reigned as regent for his son by a concubine, Tuthmosis III.

But Hatshepsut soon declared herself as pharaoh, donning royal headdress and a false beard.

Soon after her death, her monuments and tomb were demolished by her jealous successor Tuthmosis III and her mummy was thought to be lost forever.


Coalition shoots down Yemen rebel missile near Mecca

Russia denies role in deadly air strikes on Syria school

Sisi promises to revise 2013 protest law

Kurdistan to renew push for independence once Mosul liberated

Unpaid Yemenis struggle to make ends meet

KGB archives suggest Israeli officials were Soviet spies

MP says Iraqi plane bombed civilians in north of country

Russia seeks to stop jihadists from fleeing Mosul

Saudi Aramco says ex-worker in Embraer bribe case

Turkey urges end to NATO mission in Aegean by end of year

UN says IS execute at least 232 people near Mosul this week

Rebels bombard regime in run-up to breaking Aleppo siege

US official calls for vigilance against IS refinancing

US says 4 Iranian arms shipments to Yemen stopped

Tunisia denies hosting US drone base

Up to 900 IS fighters killed in Mosul says US general

Experts warn recapturing Raqa more difficult than Mosul

EU approves new Syria sanctions, targets 10 top officials

Survivors of IS torture win EU's Sakharov rights prize

Almost 100 migrants missing off Libyan coast

Rebel attack on Aleppo school kills three children: state report

Russia denies striking Syria school

Erdogan says Turkish military operation will target Raqa

IS-linked militants abandon Somali port town

From IS slaves to global voices for Yazidis

Turkey orders arrest of 73 air force pilots

US Treasury chief says 9/11 law could have ‘serious implications’

Bloodbath in air strikes on Syria school

25 travelling on inflatable dinghy found dead in Mediterannean

Villages reclaimed, but return still distant for Iraqi Christians

Turkey says will clear Kurdish fighters from Manbij

Russia cancels warship fuel stop after pressure on Spain to refuse permission

US, UK expect Raqa offensive within weeks

Sudan's Bashir to appoint PM for first time since coup

Israel army says soldier wounded by gunfire on Lebanese border

Students among 22 dead as raids hit Syria school

Israel charges 13 Jews with celebrating murder of Palestinians

Revolutionary Guards commander says Iranian firms should lead oil projects

Egyptian officer accidentally shoots dead Israeli teen

IS members ‘shave beards’ as Iraqi forces approach Mosul

US praises Qatar moves to deny jihadists funds

Clashes between protesters, police in Diyarbakir after Turkey arrests mayors

Saudi financial position strong despite oil prices says minister

Iran develops 'suicide drone'

Egypt rolls out austerity programme