‘Tutankhamun – Heavy is the Head that Wears the Crown’

The knowledge of ‘the Boy King’, Tutankhamun burst upon the world with the astonishing discovery of his tomb, by Howard Carter in November 1922:

There has been been much debate and speculation regarding the young Pharaoh and his early death ever since; and it is the fabulously rich contents of his tomb which informs much of our perceptions of king Tutankhamun to this day…

But what do we really know?  
Who and what were the real circumstances behind this tragic story; the early death of this young Pharaoh and those who inherited his throne?

In this presentation I begin with a land left in chaos and disorder on the death of Tutankamun’s father, Akhenaten – The Religious Revolutionary:
Powerful courtiers looked to a suitable successor:  a successor with the legitimacy of regal blood – the young prince Tutankhamun, Akhenaten’s nine year old son:

Tut-ankh-aten as he was originally named was faced as a boy-king with the challenges of re-establishing political and religious stability to a land in turmoil:
Heavy indeed must have been this crown worn on this young head!

Changes were made:  the capital moved, the old gods, priests and temples reinstated, but always with the presence of powerful courtiers behind the young king.

Then, still at a very young age, in unexplained circumstances Tutankhamun died! History shows his young sister-wife a grieving widow; fearful for herself and the future of the crown.  In due course, both she, and the throne fell into the hands of these same courtiers and ultimately the powerful, glorious, mighty 18th Dynasty came to an end.

Yet in spite of his early, unexpected demise, a tomb was prepared and sumptuously filled to allow Tutankhamun to enjoy his eternity in great luxury and pleasure!

Is it possible to look upon this stunningly beautiful mask of solid gold, precious stones and glass and not wonder about the life behind such a glorious creation?

Who and what were the real circumstances behind this tragic story?  Who was the power behind his young reign?   What was the cause of his death?  What happened to his grieving sister-wife?  And who filled the power-vacuum and inherited his throne on the early death of this young Pharaoh?

Looking at the discovery and finds within his tomb, I hope to address some of the common perceptions of king Tutankhamun and his reign.

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