A Sickly Tutankhamun ‘Fought in Battle,’ New Research Suggests

A Sickly Tutankhamun ‘Fought in Battle,’ New Research Suggests

Tutankhamun, the ancient Egyptian pharaoh who ascended to the throne at the age of nine, could have once taken part in battle. That’s according to the latest research into the boy king’s leather armor.

Theories about the cause of the royal’s death range from an infected leg fracture to sickle cell anemia and epilepsy. Over the years, these theories have created an image of a sickly boy who tragically succumbed to illness at an early age. However, a scientist from the University of Northampton in the UK has found evidence that King Tut may not have been as feeble as previously thought.

Lucy Skinner, the university's expert on ancient Egypt, developed the theory after helping production staff of a TV documentary to recreate Tutankhamun's leather armor. Using cutting-edge imaging techniques, the team’s scans of the armor, known as a cuirass, revealed signs of wear, marks that suggest the boy had been in battle.

“It was possible to see abrasion along the edges of the leather scales, meaning that the armor had seen considerable use,” Skinner told the documentary, ‘Tutankhamun's Treasures’, which will air on UK television. “That suggests that Tutankhamun had worn it, and that perhaps he had even seen battle. If this is true, it would be an amazing revelation.”

 

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