Archaeologists study ancient gold coffin

Rome, June 16 (IANS/AKI) Archaeologists are due to resume a study aimed at unravelling the mystery over the identity of one of most controversial coffins in ancient Egyptian history and the tomb it was found in.

The study is being carried out on a collection of 500 gold sheets found in a box in storage at the Egyptian Museum in Tahrir and the remains of a skull and a handwritten note in French dating to 1906 when the sarcophagus was found inside a tomb known as KV55.

The tomb, located at the Valley of the Kings on Luxor’s west bank, was thought to hold the body of New Kingdom pharaoh King Akhenaten, who ruled Egypt from 1353-1336 BC, but no definitive evidence has been presented to back up the theory.

An earlier phase of the study, which began last year, suggested the gold sheets may belong to the mystery gold sarcophagus found in KV55, according to Elham Salah, head of Egypt’s antiquities ministry’s museums department.

The note in French is dated to when KV55 was first discovered and states that the 500 accompanying sheets were found with a sarcophagus but does not specify which one, Salah said.

The study aims to uncover the identity of the owner of the sarcophagus and the tomb.

–IANS/AKI

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