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article imageTombs of Tut's wife, Mark Antony, Cleopatra could soon be found

By Subir Ghosh     Jan 11, 2011 in World
Luxor - Archaeologists never make predictions. But the world's best known Egyptologist says the tomb of King Tutankhamun’s wife, the Great Pyramid’s secret doors, and the final resting place of Cleopatra and Mark Anthony may well be discovered in 2011.
Dr Zahi Hawass, Secretary-General of the Supreme Council of Antiquities (SCA) has told Discovery News that these potential discoveries could well be on the cards this year
As of now, the emphasis of Dr Hawass and his team is on the Valley of Kings. In all, 63 tombs have been discovered here since the 18th century, with as many as 26 belonging to kings. Dr Hawass is looking for the 64th, which is being referred to as KV64. This tomb, in all likelihood, will be a burial chamber. Preliminary findings indicate that it could belong to Ankhesenamun, the Queen of Tutankhamun.
Ankhesenamun (1348 – 1324 BC) was a queen of the Eighteenth Dynasty. Born Ankhesenpaaten, she was the third of six known daughters of the Pharaoh Akhenaten and his wife Nefertiti. She married her half-brother Tutankhamun. She may have even briefly married Tutankhamun's successor, Ay, possibly her maternal grandfather.
The last of the tombs to be discovered here, in March 2005, was KV63. Though no mummies were found, because of its proximity to the tomb of Tutankhamun's KV62, it is believed that KV63 was erected for Ankhesenamen. Among other objects found were coffins (one with an imprint of a woman on it), women's clothing, and jewellery. Fragments of pottery bearing the partial name Paaten were also discovered. Since the only royal person known to bear this name was Ankhesenamen, or Ankhesenpaaten, it is conjectured that KV63 was designed for her.
While most of the recent excavation activities have concentrated on the west bank of Luxor, Dr Hawass has also been working on a new tomb in the Valley of the Kings and a buried pyramid in the Dashur area. The search started with the clicking of satellite images over Dashur, whoch is about 50 km from Cairo) to see the possibilities of buried pyramids. Excavation is already under way to unearth this new pyramid, which possibly belonged to a king of the 13th Dynasty (1782-1650 BC). This was a period that was bloodied by intense rivalry between suitors to the throne.
The third quest is the the final resting place of legendary lovers, Roman leader Mark Antony and Egyptian queen Cleopatra VII. Excavations have been going on for a while at the temple near the northern city of Alexandria which was built during the reign of King Ptolemy II. Cleopatra VII was the last ruler of the Ptolemaic dynasty.
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