- Tutankhamun is one of the best-known Egyptian pharaohs and erroneously taken as the most important.
What is the biography of this well-known Egyptian king?
One of the most famous pharaohs of all time is undoubtedly Tutankhamun. His reign was short-lived because of his early death, but mystery and legends surround him because of his famous curse. Not much is known about his life, besides that his reign was quite short.
Tut-anj-Aton, as it was called before the name was changed, was a pharaoh of Egypt belonging to the XVIII Dynasty. He was born in the year 1341 (approx) before Christ, and it is not known for sure who his parents were. The most accepted theory is that his father was Akhenaton but the identity of the mother is unknown, although some archaeologists think that it is one of his younger wives, Kiya. It is also believed that it could have been the result of the union between Amenhotep III and his daughter, Princess Sitamón.
When the Egyptian pharaoh Akhenaton died and he did not leave any sons, his sons-in-law Semenkera and Tutankaton succeeded him to the throne. The latter was only 12 years old when he acceded to the throne in 1332 BC. He married one of his sisters, Anjesenpaatón, who changed her name to Ankesenamón, daughter of his father Ajenatón and Nefertiti.
Detail of Tutankhamun with his wife
He had been in power for three years when he decided to re-establish the traditional cult and abolish the tax imposed by the ‘heretic pharaoh’. Thus, he returned power to the priests of the god Amon, a cult that had been set aside in the previous reign. In addition, he repaired the damage and rebuilt the temples that had been affected after the reign of Akhenaten.
Another of his measures was to move the capital. He decided to leave the city of Amarna, a city created by Akhenaton, and settled in Thebes. It was then that he changed his name to Tutankhamen. He also returned to the traditional way of governing Egypt, returning power to the priests and generals.
He died at the age of 18, being replaced on the throne by a high official, Ay, who married his widow. According to ancient customs, he was buried along with his most precious treasures and a large amount of food for his passage to the next life.
Howard Carter next to Tutankhamen’s sarcophagus
His tomb was discovered in 1922 by Howard Carter in an investigation funded by Lord Carnarvon in the Valley of the Kings. All his belongings were intact, which showed that it had not been looted. The legend about its curse comes from the fact that many of the people who entered the tomb when it was discovered died shortly after.
The true causes of his death are not known with certainty. It is believed that she died because of a riot in the palace, but it could also be because of an infected wound or a disease, such as malaria. His mummy was mistreated after the discovery of his tomb, which made investigations difficult, although we now know his face.
The main evidence was a blow to the head, which gave rise to the theories that the pharaoh had been killed. The main suspect was one of his advisors, Ay, who came to the throne after his death. Horemheb was also suspected, a general who had all the ballots to take his place after his death and who managed to reign after Ay’s death. However, it has been proven that the blow to the head was made after death, which dismantles this theory.
Tutankhamun is taken by most people as the greatest Egyptian pharaoh of all time, something far removed from reality. What happens in the case of this pharaoh is the great exhibition he had, as has also had weight the fact that his tomb has been found next to an enormous amount of treasures and that there have been countless exhibitions around his name.