King Tut’s Tomb

Tutankhamun (sometimes called King Tut) was a Pharaoh of Ancient Egypt from about 1334 BC to 1323 BC. He became Pharaoh of the 18th dynasty (royal family) during the New Kingdom at the age of 9.

Tutankhamun is one of the most well-known ancient Egyptian kings in modern times. Interestingly, he was not considered to be very important in ancient times and was not recorded on most ancient king lists. However, the discovery of his tomb in 1922 made him a celebrity. King Tut’s tomb was one of the few that had not been robbed. The well-preserved items in it gave archaeologists an idea of what may have been in other kings’ tombs.

Discovery of Tutankhamun’s tomb

The Moment Carter Opens the Tomb

Howard Carter and associates opening the shrine doors in the burial chamber (1924 reconstruction of the 1923 event)

Tutankhamun was buried in a tomb that smaller than other kings’ tombs. Archaeologists guess that he may have died unexpectedly before his tomb was ready, and his mummy had to be buried in a tomb intended for someone else. It has been suggested that his tomb was never opened by either grave robbers or priests because both he and it had been forgotten.

The Egyptologist Howard Carter (employed by Lord Carnarvon) discovered Tutankhamun’s tomb on November 4, 1922, near the entrance to the tomb of Ramses VI. This brought attention and interest in Egyptian things to the modern world. A few weeks later, on November 26, both men became the first to enter Tutankhamun’s tomb in over 3000 years. After many weeks of careful excavation, on February 16, 1923, Carter opened the burial chamber and first saw the sarcophagus (coffin) of Tutankhamun.


Tutankhamun’s death mask

5,398 items were found in the tomb, including a solid gold coffin, face mask, thrones, archery bows, a dagger that may have had a blade made from a meteorite, trumpets, a lotus chalice, food, wine, sandals, and fresh linen underwear.

Tutankhamun’s mummy still rests in his tomb in the Valley of the Kings. On November 4, 2007, 85 years to the day after Carter’s discovery, the 19-year-old pharaoh went on display in his underground tomb at Luxor. In January 2019, it was announced that the tomb would re-open to visitors after nine years of restoration.

(Adapted from:  Tutankhamun Facts for Kids. Kiddle Encyclopedia. )