The Valley of the King is located on the west bank of the Nile, opposite Luxor, and is known to contain 63 tombs, including Ramses II, Ramses III and Pharaoh Seti. The most famous of the bunch though, KV62, belonged to the young Pharaoh Tutankhamun and was not excavated until 1922 by Howard Carter, under Lord Carnarvon. The tomb was packed with fortunes and it took more than eight years to empty due to the state of the tomb and Mr Carter’s meticulous recording technique.
Currently, archaeologists are sorting through the thousands of items to prepare them for an exhibition in Cairo Museum.
Historian Bethany Hughes tried her luck during the filming of her Channel 5 show “Egypt’s Greatest Treasures” and it paid off.
She said last month: “One of the items in Carter’s original photographs was this enigmatic box.
“But we now know this treasure didn’t belong to the pharaoh.
Tutankhamun’s box opened on camera
KV62 is located in the Valley of the Kings
It still is the most remarkable thing and it’s tantalising us with its secrets
“We know that this belonged to Tutankhamun’s wife, so it’s the only artefact of hers that exists.
“It looks like it’s 100 years old, or 10 years old.”
Bethany then turned to Dr Essa Zidan and questioned if they could open it and to her surprise, he said yes.
She said: “I think it looks like a linen chest, could we open it?
“This is a box that has never been filmed before or opened and the doctor just offered to open it for us.”
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Harold Carter’s original photo
However, the pair did not quite get the find they were hoping for inside.
Dr Hughes added: “Sadly, the box is empty.
“But, you can smell it though, can’t you?
“You can smell the wood and the resin, it’s empty, but you can smell the history coming out of it.
“It still is the most remarkable thing and it’s tantalising us with its secrets.
Bettany Hughes got to see the box in person
Although the box was empty, it still stunned the historian
“It is not letting us know why it was put in the tomb, but I like that.”
Dr Hughes went on to inform viewers about other discoveries in KV62.
She continued: “The greatest and most famous treasure of all wasn’t discovered until 1925, three years after Howard Carter first entered the tomb of Tutankhamun.
“Once he removed the lid from Tut’s third and final coffin, Carter came face-to-face with something truly extraordinary.
“And that, today, takes pride of place in Cairo’s central museum.
Egypt is home to many amazing discoveries
Harold Carter refused to believe the tomb was cursed
“I’d say it’s the most famous treasure anywhere in the world and it’s the mask of Tutankhamun.”
Mr Carter is most famous for his description when he first entered the tomb, after Lord Carnarvon asked what he saw.
Amazon Prime’s “Tomb of the Boy King” claimed an effect known as “the curse of the pharaohs” could be to blame.
The series claimed that the alleged spell, which apparently does not differentiate between thieves and archaeologists, is said to cause bad luck, illness or even death.
The 2018 documentary revealed: “When Carter poked a hole into the tomb, Lord Carnarvon asked if he could see anything and Carter famously replied ‘yes wonderful things’.
The sites of ancient Egypt
“He found a curse written in hieroglyphics upon a clay tablet reading: ‘Death will slay with his wings whoever disturbs the pharaoh’s peace.’
“Five months after entering the tomb, Lord Carnarvon, aged 56, was dead.
“And at the time of his death, all of the lights went out in Cairo.”
However, the strange activity did not stop there.
The documentary continued: “American millionaire George Jay Gould died soon after visiting the tomb.
“British industrialist Joel Wolfe, who was one of the first visitors to the tomb, also fell into a coma and died.
“By 1929, a total of 22 people who had been involved in the discovery of Tutankhamun’s tomb had died prematurely within seven years.
“Only two of the original excavators were still alive.”
Howard Carter refused to believe any sort of curse and died of natural causes in 1949.