Sunday, 4 October 2015

Where is Nefertiti?

When I started to read around to research ideas for The Phoenix Code I came across a fascinating question. Queen Nefertiti was one of the most famous queens of ancient Egypt, wife of Pharaoh Akhenaten, quite possibly mother of Tutenkhamun, and known for her great beauty - and yet she seemed to have disappeared without a trace. What happened to her? Where is her tomb? Where is her mummy? There are lots of rumours and theories, but she seemed to have disappeared without a trace.  I soon knew I had to weave my own fictional account of what had happened to Queen Nefertiti into the story of The Phoenix Code, along with the long lost Benben Stone and the mysterious Pharaoh Smenkhkare.

photograph from BBC news website

Now it seems that we might be nearer finding out where Queen Nefertiti was really buried. Over the last few fews detailed scans of  Tutenkhamun's tomb have been made - as part of a project to make an exact copy of facsimile of the tomb, so that visitors could look around without causing more damage to the orginal ancient tomb. These scans revealed that there might be hidden doors leading to another, bigger tomb beyond it.

And that hidden tomb might belong to Nefertiti (have you noticed a lot of mights here?). Some archeologists believe this would explain why Tutenkhamun's tomb is smaller than other kings' tombs and an unusual shape. Then again, other archaeologists are very doubtful!

Who knows whether this theory will turn out to be right but it's an exciting possibility. Of course, if Nefertiti's tomb does turn out to be beneath Tutenkhamun's tomb in the Valley of the Kings, it will mean my tale of it being hidden by a labyrinth below the Royal Tombs in Amarna will be all wrong. But that doesn't matter. It's a story. I made it up. And who knows, perhaps other parts of my story will turn out to be right; when Queen Nefertiti's tomb is finally found, the Benben Stone might just turn out to be in there with her!

You can find out more about this new theory about Nefertiti's tomb here. 

If you want to find out more about making the copy of the tomb you can see a video here. You can also find out what it is that people do all the time that is so damaging to old tombs.