KV20 is a tomb in the Valley of the Kings. It was the first royal tomb to be constructed in the valley. KV20 was the original burial place of Thutmose I and was adapted by his daughter Hatshepsut to accommodate both her and her father; the tomb was known to the Napoleonic Expedition in 1799, but a full clearance of the tomb only was undertaken by Howard Carter in 1903, although it had been visited by several explorers between 1799 and 1903. KV20 is distinguished from other tombs in the valley, both in its general layout and because of the atypical clockwise curvature of its corridors; the location of KV20 was known to the French expedition of 1799 and to Belzoni, who worked in the area in 1817. A first attempt to excavate the tomb was undertaken by James Burton in 1824, who cleared it as far as the tomb's first chamber. Although Lepsius explored it in 1844 and 1845, no further attempts to excavate the tomb were undertaken until Carter started his clearance of the rock-hard fill in the corridor in the spring of 1903.
This excavation was conducted by Carter as Inspector of the Antiquities Service, but the work was sponsored by Theodore M. Davis, who published a report of the work in 1906. After Carter's work in the tomb ended, no further activities have been carried out. Since 1994 the burial chamber has been inaccessible due to debris deposited by flooding. KV20 is located in the easternmost branch of the valley near the tombs KV19, KV43, KV60, its plan is of unusual shape, consisting of a series of five curving, descending corridors, two of which end in chambers. These corridors bend east-south-west in a clockwise fashion, a unique feature amongst the tombs in the valley. At the bottom of this descending passage is a suite of chambers, connected to each other by a further corridor; the burial chamber is a three-pillared room and it has three small side-rooms at its northern end. The tomb has a total length of 210 meters; the upper part of the corridors is cut into good quality limestone, but the lower parts of the passage and the chambers at the bottom are cut in a layer of softer shale.
Because of this difference, the lower parts of the tomb, including the roof of the burial chamber, have collapsed partially. The soft rock in the burial chamber was unsuitable for decoration and therefore, limestone slabs inscribed with chapters from the Amduat in red and black inks were intended to line the walls. Carter found fifteen of these slabs in the burial chamber while other similar blocks from the same series, were found in KV38. Apart from a foundation deposit of Hatshepsut, the only objects found in KV20 come from the burial chamber and the corridor leading into it. Items found were stone vases bearing the names of Ahmose-Nefertari, Thutmosis I, Hatshepsut, two quartzite sarcophagi inscribed for Thutmose I and Hatshepsut, a canopic chest for Hatshepsut, the limestone blocks bearing funerary text, several fragments of the usual funerary furnishings; the sarcophagus of Thutmose was inscribed for Hatshepsut, but altered for the former king. A box inscribed for Hatshepsut as pharaoh, containing the remains of a mummified liver or spleen was recovered from the DB320 royal cache.
Other items associated with Hatshepsut, including the legs and footboard of a couch or bed and a fragmentary cartouche-shaped lid are of uncertain origin, but might come from either the Deir el Bahari cache or KV6. Fragments of at least one anthropoid coffin belonging to a mid-eighteenth dynasty female ruler, fragmentary wooden panels with decoration that links them to objects found in KV20, a faience vessel belonging to Thutmose I, were recovered from the shaft in the burial chamber of KV4, together with remains of royal funerary equipment belonging to several other New Kingdom rulers. Despite the foundation deposit of Hatshepsut and the existence of another tomb for Thutmose I, it is now presumed that KV 20 was quarried for the latter king. Re-evaluation of the architecture of KV38 and some of its content has shown that it is unlikely that this tomb pre-dates the reign of Thutmose III, it has been noted that the proportions of the KV20 burial chamber are different from those in the rest of the tomb and that they display a design relationship to the architecture of Hatshepsut's pharaonic mortuary temple.
It therefore has been suggested that KV20 extended only to its present penultimate chamber in which Thutmose I first was interred, that the tomb was re-cut and refurbished during the reign of Hatshepsut to accommodate the burial of both her and her father. The burial of Thutmose I was moved again, into KV38, by his grandson Thutmose III while the burial of Hatshepsut remained in KV20 suffering from robbery. An unidentified mummy, recovered from DB320 and found within coffins prepared by Thutmose III for Thutmose I is identified as the king; the body of Hatshepsut has not yet been identified with certainty and the mummified liver or spleen found in DB320 might be all that remains of her, although it has been suggested that one of two female mummies found in KV60 is her. A molar found in the wooden box containing her liver, was matched to one of these mummies in 2007, making it that the mummy belongs to Hatshepsut. Theban Mapping Project: KV20 - Includes description and plan of the tomb
Tomb KV18, located in the Valley of the Kings in Egypt, was intended for the burial of Pharaoh Ramesses X of the Twentieth Dynasty. The tomb consists of two sections of corridor separated by gates; the entryway was used by Howard Carter in the early 20th century as the site of the Valley's first electricity generator. After penetrating the hillside for a distance of some 43 metres, it ends at the rock face into which a series of rough steps have been carved. Little is known about this tomb, the final section of corridor was properly cleared of the voluminous flood débris filling it only recently. Reeves, N & Wilkinson, R. H; the Complete Valley of the Kings, 1996, Thames and Hudson, London. Siliotti, A. Guide to the Valley of the Kings and to the Theban Necropolises and Temples, 1996, A. A. Gaddis, Cairo. Theban Mapping Project: KV18 - Includes description and plans of the tomb
Egypt the Arab Republic of Egypt, is a country spanning the northeast corner of Africa and southwest corner of Asia by a land bridge formed by the Sinai Peninsula. Egypt is a Mediterranean country bordered by the Gaza Strip and Israel to the northeast, the Gulf of Aqaba and the Red Sea to the east, Sudan to the south, Libya to the west. Across the Gulf of Aqaba lies Jordan, across the Red Sea lies Saudi Arabia, across the Mediterranean lie Greece and Cyprus, although none share a land border with Egypt. Egypt has one of the longest histories of any country, tracing its heritage back to the 6th–4th millennia BCE. Considered a cradle of civilisation, Ancient Egypt saw some of the earliest developments of writing, urbanisation, organised religion and central government. Iconic monuments such as the Giza Necropolis and its Great Sphinx, as well the ruins of Memphis, Thebes and the Valley of the Kings, reflect this legacy and remain a significant focus of scientific and popular interest. Egypt's long and rich cultural heritage is an integral part of its national identity, which has endured, assimilated, various foreign influences, including Greek, Roman, Ottoman Turkish, Nubian.
Egypt was an early and important centre of Christianity, but was Islamised in the seventh century and remains a predominantly Muslim country, albeit with a significant Christian minority. From the 16th to the beginning of the 20th century, Egypt was ruled by foreign imperial powers: The Ottoman Empire and the British Empire. Modern Egypt dates back to 1922, when it gained nominal independence from the British Empire as a monarchy. However, British military occupation of Egypt continued, many Egyptians believed that the monarchy was an instrument of British colonialism. Following the 1952 revolution, Egypt expelled British soldiers and bureaucrats and ended British occupation, nationalized the British-held Suez Canal, exiled King Farouk and his family, declared itself a republic. In 1958 it merged with Syria to form the United Arab Republic, which dissolved in 1961. Throughout the second half of the 20th century, Egypt endured social and religious strife and political instability, fighting several armed conflicts with Israel in 1948, 1956, 1967 and 1973, occupying the Gaza Strip intermittently until 1967.
In 1978, Egypt signed the Camp David Accords withdrawing from the Gaza Strip and recognising Israel. The country continues to face challenges, from political unrest, including the recent 2011 revolution and its aftermath, to terrorism and economic underdevelopment. Egypt's current government is a presidential republic headed by President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi, described by a number of watchdogs as authoritarian. Islam is the official religion of Egypt and Arabic is its official language. With over 95 million inhabitants, Egypt is the most populous country in North Africa, the Middle East, the Arab world, the third-most populous in Africa, the fifteenth-most populous in the world; the great majority of its people live near the banks of the Nile River, an area of about 40,000 square kilometres, where the only arable land is found. The large regions of the Sahara desert, which constitute most of Egypt's territory, are sparsely inhabited. About half of Egypt's residents live in urban areas, with most spread across the densely populated centres of greater Cairo and other major cities in the Nile Delta.
The sovereign state of Egypt is a transcontinental country considered to be a regional power in North Africa, the Middle East and the Muslim world, a middle power worldwide. Egypt's economy is one of the largest and most diversified in the Middle East, is projected to become one of the largest in the world in the 21st century. In 2016, Egypt became Africa's second largest economy. Egypt is a founding member of the United Nations, Non-Aligned Movement, Arab League, African Union, Organisation of Islamic Cooperation. "Miṣr" is the Classical Quranic Arabic and modern official name of Egypt, while "Maṣr" is the local pronunciation in Egyptian Arabic. The name is of Semitic origin, directly cognate with other Semitic words for Egypt such as the Hebrew "מִצְרַיִם"; the oldest attestation of this name for Egypt is the Akkadian "mi-iṣ-ru" related to miṣru/miṣirru/miṣaru, meaning "border" or "frontier". There is evidence of rock carvings in desert oases. In the 10th millennium BCE, a culture of hunter-gatherers and fishers was replaced by a grain-grinding culture.
Climate changes or overgrazing around 8000 BCE began to desiccate the pastoral lands of Egypt, forming the Sahara. Early tribal peoples migrated to the Nile River where they developed a settled agricultural economy and more centralised society. By about 6000 BCE, a Neolithic culture rooted in the Nile Valley. During the Neolithic era, several predynastic cultures developed independently in Upper and Lower Egypt; the Badarian culture and the successor Naqada series are regarded as precursors to dynastic Egypt. The earliest known Lower Egyptian site, predates the Badarian by about seven hundred years. Contemporaneous Lower Egyptian communities coexisted with their southern counterparts for more than two thousand years, remaining culturally distinct, but maintaining frequent contact through trade; the earliest known evidence of Egyptian hieroglyphic inscriptions appeared during the predynastic period on Naqada III pottery vessels, dated to about 3200 BCE. A unified kingdom was founded c. 3150 BCE
Located in the Valley of the Kings, Tomb KV12 is an unusual tomb, used in the Eighteenth Dynasty of Ancient Egypt, again in the Nineteenth and Twentieth Dynasties. It was used for multiple burials of royal family members, rather like KV5; the builders of KV9 broke into KV12 whilst excavating that tomb. During the excavation, rumors of the second tomb had circulated throughout the camp, leading scientists dismissed the idea and continued on. Little did they realize the mistake, about to be made; the tomb diggers broke through the ground into the tomb only to find the remains of multiple family members in the new tomb. Researchers are still working on identifying the family members and collecting the other artifacts in the tomb. Reeves, N & Wilkinson, R. H; the Complete Valley of the Kings, 1996, Thames and Hudson, London. Siliotti, A. Guide to the Valley of the Kings and to the Theban Necropolises and Temples, 1996, A. A. Gaddis, Cairo. Theban Mapping Project: KV12 - Includes description and plans of the tomb.
Images showing KV12 and KV9
Tomb KV5 is a subterranean, rock-cut tomb in the Valley of the Kings. It belonged to the sons of Ramesses II. Though KV5 was excavated as early as 1825, its true extent was discovered in 1995 by Kent R. Weeks and his exploration team; the tomb is now known to be the largest in the Valley of the Kings. Weeks' discovery is considered the most dramatic in the valley since the discovery of the tomb of Tutankhamun in 1922. Standing near the entrance to the Valley, KV5 was robbed in antiquity. In addition, over the centuries, it suffered the fate of other low-lying tombs, to be filled with rubble washed down in the flash floods that accompany thunderstorms over the Valley; the tomb was examined several times once exploration of the Valley in modern times started, first in 1825, in 1902. However, they were not able to penetrate past the first few rooms, thus saw nothing unusual about the tomb, it was not until the Theban Mapping Project, under Kent R. Weeks, decided to clear the tomb that the stage was set for the discovery of its true extent and nature.
Although the works had begun in 1987, the first substantial finding came in 1995, after extensive clearing in the outer chambers of the tomb: 70 rooms, lined along long corridors, running back into the hillside. The number of the rooms corresponds to the number of sons the Pharaoh sired; this discovery caused reignited popular interest in Egyptology. Findings so far include thousands of potshards, faience beads, hieratic ostraca, glass vials, inlays and a large statue of Osiris, the god of the afterlife. Further excavations have revealed that the tomb is larger than was first thought, as it contains more corridors, with more rooms, running off from other parts of the tomb. At least 130 rooms or chambers have been discovered as of 2006, work is still continuing on clearing the rest of the tomb. In the proximity to the tomb of Ramesses II, this tomb contained most of his children, both male and female, including those who died in his lifetime in particular; the skull fragments of Amun-her-khepeshef, among others, were reconstituted.
Kent R. Weeks, The Lost Tomb. New York: William Morrow, 1998. Includes a description of the discovery and excavation of KV5. ISBN 0-688-17224-5 Kent R. Weeks, KV 5: A Preliminary Report on the Excavation of the Tomb of the Sons of Ramesses II in the Valley of the Kings. Cairo: American University Press, 2000 ISBN 977-424-574-1 Reeves, N & Wilkinson, R. H; the Complete Valley of the Kings, 1996, Thames and Hudson, London Siliotti, A. Guide to the Valley of the Kings and to the Theban Necropolises and Temples, 1996, A. A. Gaddis, Cairo, Dr M. Swales, Theban Mapping Project – Plan of the tomb and other details. KV5 Progress Reports – Considerable detail of the work performed each year
Tomb KV36, located in the Valley of the Kings in Egypt, was used for the burial of the noble Maiherpri from the Eighteenth Dynasty. Rediscovered by Victor Loret in his second season in the Valley of the Kings, on 30 March 1899, the tomb was found to be undisturbed, but as it has for a long time not been properly published, it is not as well known as other burials in the valley. All the objects found were taken to the Egyptian Museum in Cairo where they were published in the Catalogue General; the only source for the arrangement of the objects in the burial chamber was a short article by Georg Schweinfurth. He visited the tomb before its contents were brought to Cairo; however the notebooks of Loret were found and published, providing a detailed list and description of the objects found and their arrangement in the tomb chamber. The tomb of Maiherpri is a small shaft tomb with a chamber at the bottom on its west side; the burial chamber was undecorated, as with all burial chambers of non-royals in the Valley of the King.
It is 4.10 m wide. Not much is known about Maiherpri. Only two titles appear on the objects within the burial: child of the nursery and fan-bearer on the right side of the king; the mummy showed. Maiherpri was placed in a set of three coffins; the outer one is rectangular, painted black with gilded decoration. It is more a shrine than a coffin. Inside it there were two anthropoid coffins in black with gilded decoration. There is a third anthropoid coffin found next to this coffin ensemble with its lid placed next to the box; this caused some discussion in Egyptology. It seems that the'extra' coffin was intended as the innermost one, but was too big to fit into the set and was therefore left unused next to it. A similar situation was found in the burial of Tutankhamun, where his second coffin was slightly too large for the outermost one. There the coffin was shortened directly in the tomb chamber, while in the burial of Maiherpri a new coffin was obtained. Maiherpri mummy was adorned with a mummy mask.
At the foot end of the rectangular coffin, on the east side was found his canopic box with the four canopic jars still in it. Next to it there was the Book of the Dead of Maiherpri and there were found several boxes with mummified pieces of meat. At the head of the coffins were found too many pottery vessels. Other objects from this tomb are stone vases, a senet game, a nicely painted faience bowl, a quiver, a glass vase and a funerary bed with the shape of Osiris laid out in wheat. Christian Orsenigo: La tomba di Maiherperi. In: La Valle dei Re Riscoperta, I giornali di scavo Vitor Loret e altri inediti. Mailand 2004, pp. 214–221, 271–281 Reeves, N & Wilkinson, R. H; the Complete Valley of the Kings, 1996, Thames and Hudson, London. Siliotti, A. Guide to the Valley of the Kings and to the Theban Necropolises and Temples, 1996, A. A. Gaddis, Cairo. Rice, Michael. Who's Who in Ancient Egypt. Routledge. Theban Mapping Project: KV36 - Includes detailed maps of most of the tombs
Tomb KV17, located in Egypt's Valley of the Kings and known by the names "Belzoni's tomb", "the Tomb of Apis", "the Tomb of Psammis, son of Nechois", is the tomb of Pharaoh Seti I of the Nineteenth Dynasty. It is one of the best decorated tombs in the valley, but now is always closed to the public due to damage; as per November 2017 holders of a 1000 EGP entry ticket or of a Luxor Pass can visit this tomb. It was first discovered by Giovanni Battista Belzoni on 16 October 1817; when he first entered the tomb he found the wall paintings in excellent condition with the paint on the walls still looking fresh and some of the artists paints and brushes still on the floor. The longest tomb in the valley, at 137.19 meters, it contains well preserved reliefs in all but two of its eleven chambers and side rooms. One of the back chambers is decorated with the Ritual of the Opening of the Mouth, which stated that the mummy's eating and drinking organs were properly functioning. Believing in the need for these functions in the afterlife, this was a important ritual.
A long tunnel leads away deep into the mountainside from beneath the location where the sarcophagus stood in the burial chamber. The excavation of this corridor was completed, it turned out that there was any other kind of chamber at the end. Work on the corridor was just abandoned upon the burial of Seti; the sarcophagus removed on behalf of the British consul Henry Salt is since 1824 in the Sir John Soane's Museum in London. KV17 was damaged when Jean-François Champollion, translator of the Rosetta Stone, removed a wall panel of 2.26 x 1.05 m in a corridor with mirror-image scenes during his 1828-29 expedition. Other elements were removed by his companion Rossellini or the German expedition of 1845; the scenes are now in the collections of the Louvre, the museums of Berlin. The tomb became known as the "Apis tomb" because when Giovanni Belzoni found the tomb a mummified bull was found in a side room off the burial hall. A number of walls in the tomb have collapsed or cracked due to excavations in the late 1950s and early 1960s causing significant changes in the moisture levels in the surrounding rocks.
Reeves, N. & Wilkinson, R. H; the Complete Valley of the Kings, 1996, Thames and Hudson, London. Siliotti, A. Guide to the Valley of the Kings and to the Theban Necropolises and Temples 1996, A. A. Gaddis, Cairo. Belzoni, Narratives of the operations and recent discoveries in Egypt and Nubia:... 1820 Theban Mapping Project: KV17 - Includes description and plans of the tomb. 360° Photosphere virtual visit of Seti I Tomb in the Kings' Valley