Author: Archaeologist Who Found Tut's Tomb Took Items

Newly revealed letter is 'dead proof' against Howard Carter, says Bob Brier
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 14, 2022 6:04 AM CDT
Author: Archaeologist Who Found Tut's Tomb Took Items
A burial mask that was placed over King Tut's mummified body is displayed at the Grand Rapids Public Museum in Grand Rapids, Mich., in this file photo.   (Kevin Sielaff/The Grand Rapids Press via AP)

The author of a forthcoming book says it provides "dead proof" that the archaeologist who found King Tut's tomb took some of its artifacts for himself, reports the UK's Observer. The allegations first surfaced when Carter was still alive, but have never been proven. Now author Bob Brier says a newly revealed letter does just that. It was written by Sir Alan Gardiner, an expert on ancient texts who had worked on translating hieroglyphs in the tomb, to Carter himself. At some point, Carter gave Gardiner an amulet that he said did not come from the tomb, but Gardiner had it analyzed by another expert, Rex Engelbach, at the Egyptian Museum in Cairo.

The "amulet you showed me has been undoubtedly stolen from the tomb of Tutankhamun," Gardiner wrote to Carter. “I deeply regret having been placed in so awkward a position.” He added: “I naturally did not tell Engelbach that I obtained the amulet from you.” The letter will be published in Brier's upcoming book Tutankhamun and the Tomb that Changed the World.

“They were suspected of having broken into the tomb before its official opening, taking out artifacts, including jewelry, sold after their respective deaths," Brier tells the Observer of Carter and his team. "It’s been known that Carter somehow had items, and people have suspected that he might have helped himself, but these letters are dead proof." The revelation comes amid the 100th anniversary of the tomb's discovery in Egypt's Valley of the Kings, notes (More King Tut stories.)

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