British scientists have created the most detailed portrait of the Egyptian pharaoh Tutankhamun, The Times says.
The Tutankhamun’s portrait was reconstructed using virtual autopsy – scanning and imaging technology of the appearance analysis of the mummy anatomical features.
According to scientists, Tutankhamun died at age 19 and he was not really attractive. He had a malocclusion and an underhung lower jaw. His ankle and foot were distorted, and he was bound to walk with a cane. Besides, the pharaoh had wide thighs and narrow shoulders.
Scientists believe that Tutankhamun was likely suffering from genetic diseases that were caused by marriages between closely related people, which were common in Egyptian pharaohs’ families. This version was proved by the argument that there was evidence of the early deaths of dynasty members, to which Tutankhamun belonged.
The professor of medicine in London Imperial College said the pharaoh’s ancestors and descendants died early, and the younger generation’s life span was shorter and shorter.
Tutankhamun ruled Egypt in 1332-1323 BC. Historians consider the pharaoh’s son to be Akhenaten, the famous religious reformer, who was married to Nefertiti. The Tutankhamun's mother was another wife of Akhenaten, who, according to some scientists, was the sister of her own husband. Anhesenamon, the Tutankhamun’s wife, was the daughter of Akhenaten and Nefertiti.
Tutankhamun canceled his father’s religious reforms, who introduced belief in the existence of one god, Aten. During the reign of Tutankhamun, old beliefs were restored, among which there was the cult of the god Amun.
Causes of Tutankhamun’s death are not fully investigated. One theory is that he died from illness, other sources says he was killed or died of injuries after falling from his chariot.
The tomb of Tutankhamun was not looted and remained uncorrupted until 1922, when Howard Carter, an English archaeologist and Egyptologist, and George Herbert, 5th Earl of Carnarvon, discovered it. Its discovery is the largest archaeological discovery of the XX century.
The mummies of two pharaoh’s children who died right after birth were also buried in the tomb. A lot of jewelry was found in the burial chamber, including the pure gold sarcophagus weighing 110 kg. These items are now exhibited in the Cairo Museum.