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Joined: 08 Jun 2006
Location: Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
|Posted: Thu Aug 17, 2006 7:20 pm Post subject: Couldn't find Tut's mom, how about Cleo now?
Hawass busca la tumba de Cleopatra en Taposiris Magna
First Tut, now Cleo in Dr Zahi's sights
In little over two months, famed Egyptologist Dr Zahi Hawass hopes to
unearth the discovery of his lifetime: the tomb of one of history's
greatest women, Cleopatra.
The celebrity archaeologist, who is on a whistle stop lecture tour of
South Africa, said that "the discovery would even be bigger than that
Hawass told The Star on Wednesday that he suspects Cleopatra is buried
with her Roman lover Mark Antony at a temple 30km from Alexandra called
This is Hawass's first visit to SA
"I believe it is a very sacred place and this is where they would have
hidden Cleopatra and Marc Anthony from Octavian," Hawass explained.
Access to the tomb, Hawass believes, is through a shaft. Previously he
descended 35m down the shaft but could get no further because of water.
"It has a high water table but I plan to go back in October," Hawass
Some of the clues that point to the tomb belonging to Cleopatra are a
bearing her face and a statute. Cleopatra and Mark Antony committed
suicide as the Roman leader Octavian hunted them in Egypt, in 30BC.
South Africans, particularly those with DSTV, would probably recognise
Hawass as that Egyptologist who endlessly appears on documentaries
that Indiana Jones-styled hat.
But the Zahi Hawass who appeared in the Wits Great Hall cut a different
figure... he was dressed in a charcoal suit.
This is Hawass's first visit to SA and he took the opportunity to
introduce the audience to "adventure in archaeology", a slide show tour
some of his discoveries of Egypt.
"You know that 70 percent of Egypt's treasures still need to be
uncovered," he said.
Some of these archaeological treasures, Hawass said, actually lie under
the streets and houses of Cairo. His lecture also touched on how he
organised a CT scan to be done of King Tutankhamun's mummy.
For years scientists have speculated whether the boy king was murdered.
The project, which took place at the Valley of the Kings, had even
wondering at one stage if the Curse of King Tut had returned.
power failures had workers fearing for their lives.
The results of the CT scan, believes Hawass, put to bed the theory that
Tut was murdered by a blow to the head.
"What was originally thought of to be the hole in the back of his head
that killed him, we found was part of the mummification process,"
While in SA, Hawass has also been in contact with several universities.
"Perhaps we could collaborate in the future, talk about excavation
techniques," he said.
When he gets back to Egypt, Hawass will have to start preparing for his
next big operation - moving a 250 ton statute through the streets of
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