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Example research essay topic: Upper And Lower Tomb - 2,089 words

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King Tutankhamen The Boy King King Tutankhamen, or King Tut, was one of the youngest kings to reign over any country. " The Boy King" is best remembered for his magnificent funeral treasures, including his elaborate golden burial mask. King Tut achieved a measure of immortality through his glittering burial treasures. &# 9; King Tut was an Egyptian pharaoh of the 18 th dynasty who reigned from about 1348 to 1339 BC. His name can be spelled a variety of ways including Tutankhamen, Tutankhamen, or Tutankhamun. There is an enigma, though, surrounding his name. Researchers have no idea where it came from because his parents are unknown. He became king during the period of readjustment that followed the death of his father-in-law, the pharaoh Akhenaton.

The boy king married Akhenaton? s third daughter to strengthen his claim to the throne and took the name Tutankhamen meaning " gracious of life is Aton. " After less than three years of residence at Akhenaton he changed his name to Tutankhamen. Because Tut was only nine or ten when he became pharaoh the direction of the state was devolved onto an older official named Ay. (He succeeded Tut when he died. ) &# 9; When Tut was alive, however the Egyptians had a flair for playing games and telling stories. All Egyptians enjoyed contests and stories, but the wealthy pursued those pastimes with an elegant flourish.

Royalty such as Tut, was portrayed on the walls of his tomb playing the game see, which reenacted the quest for eternal fulfillment after death. This game is played on a checkerboard table with thirty squares arranged in three parallel rows. Each of two players has an equal number of counters (ranging from five to seven) in two series of different shapes. The counters are moved with sticks or small bones. &# 9; The goal of the game is to get across the board with your counters following an S-shaped path while outrunning or blocking those of your adversary; the game is won when you get all your counters off the board. The fifteenth square and the last five squares bear images or hieroglyphic inscriptions that denote a special status, either favorable or unfavorable, for the counter that lands on them. Winning this game allows the deceased to overcome any difficulties involved during his journey and to " pass" safe and sound into the next world For that very reason, the deceased brings his favorite game with him in his tomb, for it will help bring about resurrection. &# 9; Tutankhamen died before he was twenty, as his mummy shows, and was buried in the Valley of the Kings in a tomb that originally had been prepared for his advisor Ay.

Tut left no heir to succeed him and an important and powerful official, Ay, became pharaoh. About ten years after his death, thieves broke into his tomb and ransacked the antechamber. But the tomb, resealed and eventually covered over with rubble, was not touched again until modern times-although by 1000 BC every other sepulcher in the Valley had been robbed. &# 9; Few sites in the ancient world held as much wealth as the Royal Valley, and nearby villagers made a profession of robbing the tombs almost before the doors were sealed. the laborers who built the tombs- and even high officials- shared in the plunder.

In a vain attempt to safeguard the royal burial chambers, architects sank the crypts deep into secret recesses and sealed tomb entrances. But despite armies of guards, and watchman who made regular checks to see that the crypts were sealed, the tombs were violated. Thieves stole anything they could get- even the statues of gods they worshipped. &# 9; For more than a score of centuries, archeologists, tourists and tomb robbers have searched for the burial places of Egypt? s pharaohs. Almost none of these tombs, storehouses of treasure, went undisturbed. Yet, in the royal valley, where pharaohs were buried for half a millennium, one tomb was virtually forgotten.

This was the tomb of King Tut. It was discovered in 1922. The son in law of the fabulous Queen Nefertiti, Tut was a singularly unimportant ruler about whom very little is known. Nonetheless, because Tut? s tomb was found nearly intact, it remains the world? s most exciting archeological discovery- and the greatest testament yet found to the quality of ancient Egyptian life.

The British archeologist Howard Carter was nearly alone in his faith that Tut? s tomb could be found. Privately financed and armed with only a few scraps of evidence- among them some seals of the King- Carter dug endless trenches in the Royal Valley, cleared rubble and searched in dumps. It was only after six straight years of digging that he finally unearthed the door of the tomb.

It took Carter about two more years to remove, catalogue and carefully restore the more than 2000 objects found in Tut? s tomb. Carter died in 1939. &# 9; Inside the tomb contained the most elaborate treasures. The innermost room housed an immense gilded wood chest containing the dead king? s viscera. It held a jakalgod sitting on a chest full of jewels and sacred objects such as scarabs and amulets.

The japan contained silver claws, and was guardian of the tomb? s depth. It represented a god know as " he who belongs to the mummy wrappings. The plundered antechamber of the tomb had been despoiled of small, easily carried booty. The vast treasure that remained included chests full of linen, caskets, statues, and two dismantled, gilded chariots. A wooden bust of Tut was found and was probably dressed with rich necklaces and earrings, and later denuded by tomb robbers.

The crown that adorns his head is decorated with a carved royal cobra. &# 9; When Tut was prepared for the afterworld, he was buried amid symbols of his might. Tut? s tomb was full of such objects- many such as his throne, simply taken from the palace. Most of the furnishings attest to the Pharaoh? s exalted power. Although the young Tutankhamen probably never saw a battlefield, one small medallion honors his official (if not actual) prowess as a soldier.

Amid the signs of impersonal pomp there are also occasional domestic touches- for example the picture on his throne of young Queen Ankhesnamum making a wifely adjustment of the King? s costume. On the throne, the arms would rest on carved, golden, lion? s paws. The back is sheathed with gold and inlaid with colored glass paste and semiprecious stones. The medallion depicts Tut as if returning from war, preceded by captives and followed by a serpent goddess. &# 9; The clothing that was found inside the chamber was very abundant.

There were various crowns including the Blue crown or Khepresh. This was sometimes incorrectly called a war helmet. The white crown was the crown of Upper Egypt, the " News" was a headdress made of fabric that drapes the head and cascades down the upper part of the chest. The Red Crown is the crown of Lower Egypt. When used together, the crowns of Upper and Lower Egypt are called the psc hent. Jewelry included bracelets that were worn half way up the arm, the " Use" Collar, which was made of gold and semiprecious stones, the Belt and Sash, a " He" Scepter that resembles a shepherd?

s hook, and a bull? s tail which attached to the waist during important ceremonies. It symbolized the pharaoh? s virility. The tomb also included a false beard, a " Nekhakha" scepter, which was also carried by the god Osiris, sovereign of the kingdom of the dead. &# 9; Other contents of the tomb was a cedarwood chest which was carved with hieroglyphs of the King? s name and titles.

Symbols of life and fortune form the openwork. When Tut? s mummy was sealed away its tomb, the priests saw it that the dead King, reawakened, would find about him all the accustomed comforts and accoutrements of palace life. They supplied the tomb with over 100 baskets of fruit to feed him, feathered fans to cool him, statues of servants to wait on him. There were an exquisite centerpiece of an ornamental boat. In the prow of it a young girl clasps a lotus blossom to her breast; in the stern, a dwarf poles the boat.

A beautiful vase inlaid with floral garlands was once filled with costly oils was also present. Skin oils were provided for the pharaoh? s continued good grooming. Two finely carved ceremonial knives, probably intended for a royal military expedition were inside. One was gold the other iron.

As added equipment for such an expedition, the priests buried two chariots and even a folding camp bed. &# 9; Besides such traditional objects of royal pleasure. Tutankhamen? s tomb contained some special momento's of the young king? s childhood. Included among these were a toy-box and a painting set. &# 9; Many kinds of animals represented gods to the ancient Egyptians and were often kept in temples. They were also favorite subjects for Egyptian artists and craftsmen.

Both household and tomb furnishings were decorated with animal figures; a bed or a bier commonly had a lion? s head and tail as end pieces, and stood on sculptured paws. The cow Hathor, had a special place in the pharaoh? s tomb, for she was sometimes depicted in Egyptian art as suckling a king. Most important was the japan guarding Tutankhamen?

s mummy: this creature represented Anubis, god of embalming and protector of the dead. &# 9; Not only was Tutankhamen? s tomb adorned with gods in the guise of animals, but divinities in human form also stood guard. Two statues of Tutankhamen himself flanked the entrance to the burial chamber. Inscriptions proclaimed that the young Pharaoh was " The Good God of whom one can be proud, the Sovereign of whom one boasts. " &# 9; In the inner most room, guarding a shrine containing the dead king?

s vital organs, stood four beautiful goddess: Isis, protecting the liver; and Series, the intestines. These organs were preserved in separate urns. The heart was left in the mummy. &# 9; Greater than all the treasure in the tomb? s outer rooms was the mummy itself, enclosed in its massive interior shrine. Archeologists had never before unearthed a royal mummy still encased in its original state. The mummified King was locked away at the center of a series of cases, each fitting inside another like Chinese boxes- four outer shrines of gilded wood; then a sculptured stone sarcophagus; then three inlaid coffins, the innermost, weighing 242 pounds of solid gold.

Each coffin was shaped in the figure of the King. Each depicted him wearing a crown composed of the Vulture and Cobra, the symbols respectively of Upper and Lower Egypt. Even within the final coffin the face of the mummy was concealed by a beaten-gold mask. &# 9; " For a moment, " reflected the archeologists who unsealed these ancient coffins, " time as a factor in human life has lost its meaning The very air you breathe, unchanged through the centuries, you share with those who laid the mummy to its rest. " &# 9; Last but not least the inscriptions on the right panel of the tomb spelled out exactly what Tutankhamen? s name meant. Imn = Amun, Tut = Image, Ankh = Living. This is the meaning of his last name, Living image of Amun. &# 9; " Can see anything? " " Yes, " Carter replied, " wonderful things. " Such were the words of Howard Carter on February 17, 1923 as the archaeologist peered into the 3500 year old darkness of Pharaoh Tutankhamen?

s burial chamber and forever altered the scope of man? s imagination. Carter and his team of the world? s most eminent archaeological experts uncovered what are undoubtedly among the greatest riches of this or any known time. The name Tutankhamen, in reality a relatively insignificant young king, has become legendary and has furthermore assumed a position in our vocabulary and cultural ethos rivaled by few other figures of ancient history. Of the events which directly followed that momentous day in 1923, we are utterly baffled.

By 1929, twenty-two people who had been either directly or indirectly involved in the exhumation of Tut and his treasures were dead, in most cases, of undiagnosable causes. Was this just a floor or was it the curse of King Tutankhamen. 316


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Research essay sample on Upper And Lower Tomb

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