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News from the Valley of the Kings

... and the hunt for KV64. A blog by Kate Phizackerley

Updated: 2018-03-23T07:31:05.524+00:00


Correcting Rumours


There seem to be suggestions that Andrea and I know the affiliation of
those who hacked us. We don't and by policy I haven't speculated. Part
of the reason for my reticence is that some, although not all, of the
hackers have been polite to us. In particular, at no point did the hackers claim association.with any religion.

We have also made no public assessment of our Web host for
Egyptological. Were the site to reappear it would be with a different
host, but we needed to swap hosts anyway on grounds of capacity/economy.

We are grateful for the offers of assistance, thank you. I will share
those emailed to me with Andrea next week. I am however reluctant to
share any further details of what has happened with anybody to avoid
the risk of a third party politicising the issue. By policy
Egyptological was apolitical and respectful of all religions. If there is to be any future, we will retain those principles. And perhaps the times when principles matter most are in the face of adversity.

Thanks for all the best wishes. If it is possible for News From the
Valley of the Kings to return it will, but if nothing else the time
taken up by the hack has made posting here impractical over the next
couple of months and my study time is likely to be devoted to Web
security rather than Egyptology over the next several weeks. If there
is a major discovery I would probably break my silence but otherwise I
would expect this blog to be quiet in terms of news until the summer at
least while I catch the rest of my life back up.

Best wishes

Blog Closed


Following on from the problems at Egyptological I have taken the reluctant decision to close this blog as well for the foreseeable future.  Many thanks for your support over the years.(image)

Voluntary Slavery in Ancient Egypt


This is something new to me.  For about two generations between 190BC and 130BC some people volunteered to become temple slaves, says Dr Kim Ryholt -see Sci News.  Apparently it was preferable to conscription as forced hard labour by the king.  Apparently most of those who volunteered as temple slaves were unable to name their fathers.(image)

Five New West Bank Tombs from TiP


Italian archaeologists have had an unexpected find while working at the Temple of Amenhotep II.  By the Serapeum they have discovered five tombs from the Third Intermediate Period.  The highlight seems to be the find of canopic jars - picture on Ahram with a few more details.

(Sorry I have been quiet.  As I mentioned before Christmas, Egyptological was targeted by mistake during the tit-for-tat hacks of Egyptian and Israeli government sites.  I took Christmas off then had to completely wipe my laptop to be certain no esoteric malware was lurking unseen by my anti-virus programmes.  My laptop is back in commission now but I still have things to reload.  We are also in the process of restoring Egyptological and security hardening it.  We hadn't expected an Eyptology site to be a political target for hacktivists but the experience has show how easy it is to get caught up in the crossfire.)(image)

Update Regarding Egyptological


Kate and Andrea are very sad to announce that Egyptological will be unavailable for the forseeable future.  It has been targeted by a professional hacking group as part of an onslaught on Egypt-related web sites during the current unrest in Egypt.Although we have been in negotiations with the hackers, which seemed to be going well, they have now announced their intention of resuming hostilities against us.  They apparently see Egyptology sites such as ours as representing a form of political threat.Until we have been able to assess the level of damage inflicted upon our backup solution, and have been able to devise a new strategy for the future security of Egyptological, our site will remain unavailable.  We do not expect it to be recovered until the end of January.Please be aware, however, that we are fully committed to restoring Egyptological to its former state, together with the latest unpublished edition of the Magazine, and we are investigating the possibility of publishing a temporary archive at an earlier date.We recommend that anyone with similar web sites should upgrade their own security arrangements, as you may now be interpreted as representing a political or religious affiliation.Kind regards from both of usAndrea Byrnes and Kate PhizackerleyEgyptological(PS sorry about the format. Copy and paste issue.)   This article from News from the Valley of the Kings © Kate Phizackerley is offered on a Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Licence 3.0 unless otherwise noted. Please visit the blog to join the discussion. You may reproduce articles if this notice is included unaltered and there are no adverts on your page. Comments © individual authors may not be reproduced. [...]

Egyptological is Down


Just a warning to sat that Egyptological is down and is likely to be down all day and quite possibly tomorrow too.(image)



Just a quick note to say that the next edition of Egyptological Magazine should be out on Monday all being well.

More Items Stolen Items Recovered


Al Masry Al Youm reports the recovery of more items stolen from the Egyptian Museum along with others allegedly stolen from archaeological sites.  See

There are no details of the objects and be warned: the photo is an old one showing items recovered 18 months ago.(image)

Tutankhamun's Tomb to Close Permanently


As predicted, KV62 is to remain closed to tourist access in a move many will see as sensible. The replica tomb is presently on display in Cairo but will be erected in Luxor in due course to take over as the destination for tourists.

Sad in so many ways but inevitable and sensible too.

Luxor Times: 5th Dynasty Princess’ tomb discovered in Abu Sir



Tomb TT39 Puimre


Jane Akshar and a guest have just visited this Theban noble's tomb to photograph the outside. See for photos and explanatory text:

Not that Nebamun


It seems that this is a different Nebamun ...

Tomb of Nebamun


There is a paper in German: Andrea Byrnes' Facebook page, Kento Zenihiro comments:They found about 100 examples of a cone, which had been registered as # 66 by Norman de G. Davies and M. F. Laming Macadam, in the heaps of the collapsed facade of the recently-found Saff tomb K10.1 which is located on Dra Abul Naga (They have not shown the map so I do not know the exact location but it must be near TT 232 and the pyramid of Nebkheperre-Antef).Note that M. Betro and P. D. Vesco working at nearby tomb (TT 14) had already identified this cone to be of that Nebamun (Cf. Betro and Vesco (2010). Un cono funerario dall'area di M.I.D.A.N.05 a Dra Abu el-Naga e il problem della tomba perduta di Nebamon. Egitto e vicino Oriente, 33, 5-16).   This article from News from the Valley of the Kings © Kate Phizackerley is offered on a Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Licence 3.0 unless otherwise noted. Please visit the blog to join the discussion. You may reproduce articles if this notice is included unaltered and there are no adverts on your page. Comments © individual authors may not be reproduced. [...]

Lost Tomb of Nebamun Found?


Kento Zenihiro (of cones fame) has reported rumours on Facebook that the lost Tomb of Nebamun has been rediscovered.  The tomb (if found) has already been stripped of its reliefs: many are in the British Museum already.  Nonetheless, re-finding the tomb would be welcome and might give better context to the BM reliefs.

I am just off out but will try to investigate later.(image)

Photo - Stela Memorial of Teti and Merit


Between being away and a few days ill in bed, I have not have chance to post so I thought I would share now I am back one of the photos I took in Colmar of a stela which many people might not have seen. 

Temple of Debod at Night


The latest album on Egyptological is a quartet of four photographs of the Temple of Debod at night taken by reader, Alexander Scharnweber and copyright to him.  My thanks to Alexander.  Do check out the other three images on Egyptological!   This article from News from the Valley of the Kings © Kate Phizackerley is offered on a Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Licence 3.0 unless otherwise noted. Please visit the blog to join the discussion. You may reproduce articles if this notice is included unaltered and there are no adverts on your page. Comments © individual authors may not be reproduced. [...]

Inscriptions of Temple of Debod Fully Recorded


I had hoped to get to Madrid earlier in the year but didn't because my travelling companion was unwell.  I was looking forward to seeing the Temple of Debod. (image) The Temple was one of those inundated by the completion of the Aswan Dam and was gifted to Spain by the Egyptian Government as a thankyou for her efforts in rescuing the Nubian Temples. (Of course, had the Egyptian Government not approved the dam no rescue would have been required.) The temple now stands in a park in the centre of Madrid, although it is clear from the pictures that only the most significant stonework was rescued. Although it has been documented before, apparently the publication was incomplete in some regards and is now difficult to obtain. The 20th Century was also far from kind to the temple. Anyway, Dr. Francisco J. Valentin Martín has re-recorded the temple and published new translations and transliterations of the inscriptions. Image: Dalbera via Creative Commons and Flickr (image)

Draft Demotic Dictionary Finalised


The University of Chicago has just published the last sections (for now) of an online dictionary of Demotic Egyptian.  There are quite a few articles online, based on the same press release I guess, but this one is my favourite because it has some pictures:

Police Move to Protect Merenptah Pillar


Police are clearing at least this site from encroachment. Overdue progress which is welcome, but much more is needed.

Cambridge Mummy Restored with Lego


This is a nice story about a cartonnage mummy case in the Fitzwilliam Museum in Cambridge, England being put back on display after 80 years in storage. The mummy itself is missing, presumed robbed. There are some nice images but they are all copyright so I cannot reproduce them here. My thanks to Mark Hubbard for spotting the story.(image)

New Kingdom Stela found at Al-Khamis (Cairo)


A new stone inscription has been found in Cairo which lists offerings to the Gods. The story seems only to have been covered in Ahram and is not very detailed at all.(image)

Theban Mapping Project Update


There is an update on the Theban Mapping Project site. It is worth reading in its entirety but there are two big news items: Firstly, the project has completed a photographic catalogue of all decorated walls in all Valley of the Kings tombs which will be made available online. That is certainly important both for scholarship and has a record of the Valley of the Kings. Very, very welcome. Secondly, there have cleared a few more rooms in KV5. It's somewhat unclear but the impression is that the extent of the tomb is now probably known. It's also interesting that ushabti from the reigns of Ramses VI or VII have been found. My thanks to Dennis and Bill Sommer.(image)

Were Tutankhamun and Akhenaten Epileptic?


That's the latest suggestion by Mr Hutan Ashrafian, a clinical lecturer at Imperial College London and covered in New Scientist. (My thanks to Andrea Byrnes on Facebook.) The reasons seem to be: 1) the generations died successively younger indicating an inheritable condition which became more acute over the decades; 2) Amenhotep III and Akhenaten had religious experiences; and 3) Akhenaten's feminisation could have been a result of disruption of the temporal lobes which caused hormal changes. Ashrafian believes that epilepsy killed Tutankhamun. For me that's the obvious weakness in the theory. If an inherited condition killed Tutankhamun at a younger age than his ancenstors, one would expect the other supposed symptoms to have also been more severe. So for instance, we should be looking for a greater feminisation of Tutankhamun that Akhenaten and probably for him to have been even more prone to religious experiences. There is no evidence for either. (image)

Egyptological Anniversary Edition


Andrea and I have just published the latest edition of Egyptological. This edition celebrates our first anniversary and fittingly is the biggest, and of course best, yet.

I won't spend too long her describing the edition because I wrote a long editorial which does that. For readers here, though, I would particularly suggest reading Pleasant Living in Amarna by Jac Strijbos.  It's quite nice to have something on Amarna which isn't Akhenaten and Nefertiti.

We have published 18 new articles and albums so plenty for you to enjoy.  As usual, free of charge and without adverts.  Our approach is that Egyptological is by the community for the community.  And we are always looking for articles and albums of photographs.  If you would like to participate, you can find details on the site.


Lost Pyramids Located in Upper Egypt?


That's what Discovery News is saying.  Apparently a researcher into Google Earth anomalies belieces she has located two unknown pyramid complexes in Upper Egypt.  I have looked at the photos (see the link) and am somewhat sceptical in respect of the first site, but then buried pyramids are not always obvious.  The second near Dimai looks more promising to me.

What worries me is that the process feels sort of like those people who can see man-made features on Mars (Cyndonia for instance) in satellite images.  I would be interested in a fractal analysis of the two supposed pyramid areas - that technique is promising when it comes to differentiating between man-made and natural mounds.(image)