Tutankhamun’s gold mask on display after restoration

Cairo, Dec 17 (IANS) The golden burial mask of King Tutankhamun, one of ancient Egypt’s most famous artefacts, was back on display after eight weeks of restoration by an Egyptian-German team.

The restored mask was back in its display case at the Egyptian Museum in Cairo on Wednesday.

In January, reports said that the long shinny blue beard of the king was damaged by the museum’s cleaning workers in August 2015 and then was glued back onsite hastily and unprofessionally, Xinhua news agency reported.

According to the reports, dried glue was visible along the joints between the beard and the mask.

This led the Egyptian government to seek the help of professional conservators from Germany to restore the priceless relic.

The German ministry of foreign affairs donated 50,000 euros ($54,260) for the restoration process of the mask which started on October 10.

German conservator Christian Eckmann, who oversaw the restoration process, said the team discovered an internal gold tube which is still stuck in the beard. The tube was used to connect the beard to the mask.

“This was one of the most challenging procedures to separate this internal tube in order to clean the beard,” he added.

“We have the pleasure to do present the mask in its original glance again,” Eckman said.

Tutankhamun, who ascended to the throne at the age of nine and died at the age of 19, is the world’s best known pharaoh of ancient Egypt.

The young king ruled from 1332 B.C. to 1323 B.C., during a period known as the New Kingdom in Egypt’s history.

He won his fame for his tomb, which was discovered by British Egyptologist Howard Carter in 1922 and has remained one of the best preserved.

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