'Hidden chamber' in Tutankhamun’s tomb is ‘full of treasures’

Egypt’s tourism minister promises the news ‘will be a Big Bang – the discovery of the 21st century’ 

Loulla-Mae Eleftheriou-Smith
Wednesday 24 February 2016 17:20

A possible hidden chamber within the ancient tomb of Tutankhamun is “full of treasures,” Egypt’s tourism minister has promised.

The possibility of a hidden chamber was revealed late last year, when Egypt’s Antiques Ministry said scans of the boy king’s tomb showed evidence of another room behind two secluded doorways, and suggested the possibility of it being the resting place of Queen Nefertiti.

Egypt’s tourism minister Hisham Zaazou told Spanish newspaper ABC on a trip to Spain that there will be a press conference regarding what has been found in Tutankhamun’s tomb, adding that the discovery will be a “Big Bang”.

“We do not know if the burial chamber is Nefertiti or another woman, but it is full of treasures,” he told the newspaper. “It will be a ‘Big Bang’, the discovery of the 21st century”.

Various theories surround the possibility of the hidden chamber. British Egyptologist Nicholas Reeves first raised the belief that Queen Nefertiti, understood to be Tutankhamun’s step-mother, could be buried in a secret compartment after high resolution photos showed straight lines on the walls of the tomb.

In November, Egyptian officials said they were “90% sure” of the hidden chamber after conducting radar tests on the tomb.

But former antiquities minister and archaeologist Zahi Hawasshas refuted Mr Reeves’ claims, believing Queen Nefertiti to be one of the female mummies discovered in the Valley of the Queens, which are currently undergoing DNA tests at the Egyptian museum.

It is thought that Tutenkhamun’s tomb may have originally been Queen Nefertiti’s tomb, but was converted when he died at the age of 19, before his own burial chamber had been completed.

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