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Sunday, July 01, 2007

Skin and Bones

I don't know if many of you know that I love archeology. Hence I am always all ear when some shovel hits a stone, sacrophargus or silver spoon beneath some layers of sand.

The lastest find just happened last month, when a long-overlooked mummy has been identified as Queen Hatshepsut, ancient Egypt's most powerful female pharaoh.

Kids, she is bigger and more powerful than Cleopatra or Nefertiti (who never took the title of pharaoh). She also reigned the longest (20 years), despite controversy to her sitting on the throne, and we all know what can be done with snakes and a bit of poison back in those days.

Hatshepsut stole the throne from her young stepson, she is said to have dressed herself as a man and wearing a fake beard, and in an unprecedented move, declared herself Pharaoh. "Carpe Diem" she might have thought and went for it. In her defense, no wars occured under her reign and her queendom prospered.

When she died, all traces of her mysteriously disappeared, including her mummy. Shocking! Maybe an upset evil stepson should be questioned. What with technology being what it is, I am sure we can create such an interrogation in no time.

They already found her in 1903 when a mummy was found lying on the ground next to the sarcophagus holding the mummy of the queen's wet nurse,Sitr-In, in a tomb in the Valley of Kings burial ground in Luxor. Being thought of as insignificant, it was left in the tomb for decades. Apparently they have a bunch of unidentified mummies lying around and every once in a while they have a crack at one. Their first clue should have been the position of the left hand on her chest, a traditional sign of royalty, but I wasn't there to point that out way back then.

Speaking of the full range of forensic technology to identify mysteries, this time around the key clue was a tooth found in a relic box inscribed with Hatshepsut's name and cartouche. Really? That´s just amazing. This single tooth, however, was found previously and a CAT scan revealed that this tooth exactly matches and is indeed the missing tooth from this mummy's jaw. There goes my whole belief in the tooth fairy!

In all fairness though, to double check they made an DNA comparison with the mummy of Ahmose Nefertari, Hatshepsut's grandmother, and results show a clear link. As if I was gonna buy that tooth story!

This discovery is the most significant find since the discovery of King Tutankhamun's tomb in 1922. Well ok, but those experts really don't know that I found the second sock to my favourite pair the other day. It's been lost for weeks!

Queen Hatshepsut was about 50 when she died of some combination of metastatic bone cancer, diabetes, and liver cancer. The first thing said about her was that she was obese. Now that just goes to show, even when you are just skin and bones, you still are way too big!

oh and "Rabbit, rabbit" to each and everyone.


Posted by Minka :: 12:04 pm :: 21 Royal Subjects

Link to this Royal Decree!


At 13:16, Anonymous al said...

Half the time, I can't even find my keys.

'morning, Minky.

At 16:37, Anonymous neva said...

Rabbit, Rabbit!

and wowie, wowie, dear Penguin. suddenly i'm feeling smart and stuff. not ready to suspend my belief in the Tooth Fairy quite yet, but thanks to you, i now know the Sock Dwarves don't exist! (if you watched South Park, that would have totally cracked you up!)

"still too big"?? heh heh. societal standards for appearances: can't live with 'em, can't escape 'em, even if you died, like, thousands of years ago. yeesh. xox

At 17:35, Blogger I Dive At Night said...

Rabbit rabbit Minka! Almost ready for your upcoming trip to Germany?

Hey, is this the mummy from the museum in Niagara Falls Canada? If so, I saw it when I as a child, 30 years before it was discovered. :-)

At 17:39, Blogger I Dive At Night said...

Oh no. Different mummy. That was Ramesses I.

At 17:44, Blogger Doug said...

How do you know the two socks are twins?

At 19:39, Blogger Doug said...

And by the way, that was a great post. Interesting and funny. But I still think you need DNA and a CAT scan to match the socks.

At 21:32, Blogger I Dive At Night said...

I was going to ask if the sock had any good stories from its two week vacation? But Doug raises a good point. If you've found a different 2nd sock, then it surely has great stories!

At 00:13, Blogger TLP said...

Rabbit rabbit. Very interesting post.

At 01:23, Blogger Minka said...

Al, it´s the elves. They borrow them sometimes to play with them. They always return them to the spot where tehy found them though.

neva, I always thought my washing machine was eating them. And then I just blamed tidal waves, it´s not like they did anything, but it is good to have soemthign to blame!

Morgan, yep...i still have to pack soem stuff and sorta scrub my floors, my flat always have to be tidy when I leave, so it is ready for me when I get back and for some reason my bird doesn't care much for tidying uo!

Doug, I can tell by the knotty thread and I am making photo copies as we speak. Taking blood will be bit of a pickle...

Morgan, those are special knitted socks, only one pair of them exists. The obvious knitting mistakes ta the heal properly indicte that tehy were made by me. No chance in teh world there are others quite like this!

TLP, rabbit rabbit Mrs. Pez! here is to fewer sleepless nights in July :)

At 01:26, Blogger goldennib said...

A 20 year reign with no wars and lots of prosperity and they worry about how she looks.

At 14:11, Anonymous Joel said...

Very interesting. Crunchy yet entertaining...and good for you too!

At 14:55, Blogger birdwoman said...

you defeated the sock elf?! Whoa!

this was a really cool story, thanks for sharing it. If only her name didn't sound like a sneeze.


At 21:30, Blogger actonbell said...

Cool! Egypt's got the best stuff. Very educational but entertaining, too. I'm fascinated with these ancient women who somehow succeeded in living male lives. There were more than we'll ever know about.

At 01:08, Blogger Minka said...

goldennib, I know...if women were to rule the world...let´s see what happens in 50 years :)

Joel, good for me? Crunchy and entertaining...makes me thing of Lucky Charms for soem odd reason!

birdwoman, I have tyoed her name liek 5 times and if someone was gonna ask me her name I'd have a really blank expression on my face...it starts with H though ;)

actonbell, I feel teh utmost respect fro them Way back in a society where everythign was set against them tehy persevered, nowadays it is expected of us and we have a tough time getting there.

At 02:25, Blogger G said...

Excellent post and this puts a new meaning on holding on to the kids' teeth that they won't give up to the tooth fairy!

At 02:28, Blogger Gawpo said...

στην αρχή ήταν η αρχή (in the beginning was the beginning). I love the word archeology. It's all about the beginnings. Nice pics.

At 15:53, Blogger Minka said...

g: they also make a nice bracelet, if you want to join a tribal group or soemthing ;)

gawpo: archeology...it even sounds nice, doesn't it!

At 22:19, Blogger Kyahgirl said...

man, I can relate to the sock thing. Never had any trouble til I had kids, now its an ongoing mystery around my house.

great post! :-)

At 22:05, Blogger tsduff said...

Now there's a gal who doesn't look too bad for her age - LOL!

At 00:59, Blogger Trundling Grunt said...

she was just big-boned. And apparently every bit as nasty as they made her out to be.

At 13:21, Anonymous Paul said...

I do like Egyptology!


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