Treasures of King Tutankhamun discovered by Norfolk’s Howard Carter to go on world tour
PUBLISHED: 18:24 21 February 2019 | UPDATED: 08:40 22 February 2019
His discoveries caused a worldwide sensation, shedding a light on the flourishing world of the Egyptian pharaohs of more than 3,000 years ago.
And now the treasures of Tutankhamun discovered by Howard Carter, who grew up in Swaffham, are to be shown around the world before returning permanently to Egypt.
Almost a century has gone by since Carter found the final resting place of the Tutankhamun, who died aged 18 or 19.
Dr Mostafa Waziry, secretary general of the Egyptian Ministry of State for Antiquities, said: “To celebrate the 100th year anniversary of the discovery of Tutankhamun’s tomb, Egypt is sending 150 masterpieces to tour all over the world.
“Please see them, visit them, before they return back to Egypt forever.”
The tour will include an exhibition opening in November at the Saatchi Gallery in London.
But if you don’t fancy a trip to the capital to learn about ‘King Tut’, Swaffham Museum has a permanent exhibition about the ancient Egyptians and Carter’s links to the town, where both his parents were born.
Carter’s interest in Egyptology was sparked by the large collection of Egyptian antiques housed at Didlington Hall, near Swaffham, which was demolished in the 1950s.
He died in 1939, aged 64.
Tutankhamun was the son of the religious revolutionary pharaoh Akhenaten, who discarded polytheism in favour of worshipping one god.
He ascended to the throne as a child in 1333BC, frail and with numerous health complaints, when New Kingdom Egypt was near its zenith.
Speculation remains as to the cause of his death, though many scientists believe it was the result of an accident and possibly a subsequent infection.
The London exhibition is produced by IMG. John Norman, director at IMG, said: “The centennial of one of the greatest archaeological discoveries in history inspired us to create an exhibition like none before.
“As millions get a final opportunity to see these ancient and exquisite objects in an immersive and personal context, we know Tutankhamun will continue to live large in the hearts of people around the world for generations to come.”