Who Is Buried in Queen Nefertiti's Tomb?

09 December, 2015

She was known for her beauty.

Mystery still surrounds her death.

For thousands of years, people wondered: What happened to Queen Nefertiti?

She lived and died in the 14th century B.C.

Who is Buried in Nefertiti's Tomb?
Who is Buried in Nefertiti's Tomb?

But where is her body buried?

It remains a mystery. People have guessed and searched, but always come up empty-handed.

Now, archaeologists think they might be close to an answer ...

She might be behind this wall, in a hidden chamber, or room, inside King Tutankhamun's tomb. He's better known as King Tut.

Tut is famous for the discovery of his tomb — found undisturbed, while many others were robbed years ago.

An X-ray machine was brought in to help in the search. With cameras recording the event, a Japanese radar specialist used modern technology to get an ancient tomb to give up its secrets.

Egyptian Antiquities Minister Mamdouh al-Damaty told reporters recently that before the X-ray scans, there was a 60 percent chance that something was behind those walls.

Now, he says, "it's 90 percent likely there is something behind these walls."

British Archaeologist Nicolas Reeves has been investigating.

"The proposal I put forward was that the burial of Tutankhamun was actually a tomb within a tomb."

But why King Tut's tomb?

King Tut died when he was only 19 years old. Queen Nefertiti, his step-mother, had died earlier.

There might not have been time to build Tut his own tomb, so some believe he is actually buried in a chamber off a larger tomb. Was it Nefertiti's?

King Tut's tomb is smaller than other pharaohs. Experts ask: Why is it shaped more like those of Egyptian queens of the time?

The next step to finding these answers is a month-long analysis of the X-rays in Japan. Then the exploration continues in Luxor.

If the mystery is solved, if, indeed it is Nefertiti's tomb, it will be the largest discovery in Egypt in a long time. And that could mean more tourists will return to the Valley of the Kings.

I'm Anne Ball.

What do you think of this mystery? Do you like Egyptian history? We want to hear from you. Send us a message in the Comments section or on 51VOA.COM.

Anne Ball wrote this story. Kathleen Struck was the editor.


Words in This Story

empty-handed -- adj. did not get anything

archaeologist – n. a person who studies past human life and activities by studying the bones, tools, etc., of ancient people

tomb – n. a place where bodies are buried

X-ray scan –n. pictures made by an X-ray machine