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Tutankhamun's Funeral

Since Tutankhamun died suddenly, his burial was arranged in haste. Following the mummification of his human remains, his body was placed in a gold coffin and transported across the Nile to the Valley of the Kings. In the funeral procession were Tutankhamun's wife and close relatives, priests and the highest officials of the land.

The outer coffin was made of wood covered with a thin layer of gesso (plaster) and overlaid with gold foil. It was sculpted in the image of Tutankhamun as Osiris, the god who presided over the judgement of the dead. He carries a crook and flail, and wears the royal beard and a nemes headcloth. On either side of him, Isis and Nephthys spread their wings in a protective embrace. Two rows of hieroglyphs run down the front of the lid.

CMC S97 10866; 
PCD 2001-281-038 This boat, with its high prow and stern, is typical of those built during the New Kingdom. It carries an exact replica of the gold coffin in which Tutankhamun's mummy was transported across the Nile to his tomb in the Valley of the Kings. Statues of gods and goddess were taken from one temple to another along the Nile in divine barks.
Mourners surround Tutankhamun's coffin. Re-enactment scene from the film Mysteries of Egypt. CMC PCD 2001-274-010
CMC PCD 2001-279-052 Priests lead the funeral procession taking Tutankhamun's coffin to his tomb. Re-enactment scene from the film Mysteries of Egypt.

The tomb in which Tutankhamun was buried was probably intended for another person, but because of the young pharaoh's untimely death, it became his final resting place. Following the ritual "opening of the mouth" performed by his successor, Ay, his body and coffins were placed in a red sarcophagus in the burial chamber. The foot of the outer coffin was sliced off and splashed with resin before the lid was set in place. The mismatched lid may have been dropped as it was being lowered into place because it was cracked. By the looks of it, the shrines around the sarcophagus were hastily erected, banged into place without due care as to the proper ritual orientation. A wall was constructed to seal the burial chamber from the antechamber. With all the worldly goods required for a happy existence in the afterworld in place, the entrance to the tomb was sealed, and Tutankhamun's cartouche was stamped on the wet plaster wall. The outer corridor was then closed off and the entrance to the tomb filled with rubble to prevent access to the burial chamber. Tutankhamun's cartouche


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