Posts Tagged With: Kings

Official says Egypt approves radar for Nefertiti tomb quest…..

CAIRO (AP) — The Egyptian Antiquities Ministry granted preliminary approval for the use of a non-invasive radar to verify a theory that Queen Nefertiti’s crypt may be hidden behind King Tutankhamun’s 3,300-year-old tomb in the famous Valley of the Kings, a ministry official said Tuesday.

A security clearance for the radar’s use will probably be obtained within a month, said Mouchira Moussa, media consultant to Antiquities Minister Mamdouh el-Damaty.

“It’s not going to cause any damage to the monument,” Moussa said.

Egyptologist Nicholas Reeves recently published his theory, but it has yet to be peer-reviewed. He believes that Tutankhamun, who died at the age of 19, may have been rushed into an outer chamber of what was originally the tomb of Nefertiti, which has never been found.

British archaeologist Howard Carter discovered Tut’s tomb in Luxor’s Valley of the Kings in 1922 — intact and packed with antiquities including Tut’s world-famous golden mask.

In his paper, Reeves claims high-resolution images of King Tut’s tomb include lines underneath plastered surfaces of painted walls, showing there could be two unexplored doorways, one of which could potentially lead to Nefertiti’s tomb. He also argues that the design of King Tut’s tomb suggests it was built for a queen, rather than a king.

The Japanese radar, which will be operated by an expert who will accompany the equipment from Japan for the inspection once the final approval is granted, will look beyond the walls that Reeves says may be leading into the suspected tomb and the other chamber, Moussa said.

Reeves, who has been in contact with the minister, arrives in Cairo Saturday, Moussa said, and he and el-Damaty will travel to Luxor to inspect the tomb.

“We’re very excited… It may not be a tomb belonging to Nefertiti, but it could be a tomb belonging to one of the nobles,” said Moussa. “If it is Nefertiti’s, this would be very massive.”

Already, there’s a mummy at the Egyptian Museum in Cairo that has strong DNA evidence of being Tut’s mother. DNA testing also has provided strong evidence suggesting that Tut’s father likely was the Pharaoh Akhenaten, the first pharaoh to try switching Egypt to monotheism. The DNA testing also brought a new discovery: that Tut’s mother was Akhenaten’s sister.

Still, some archaeologists believe the two were probably cousins and that this DNA result could be the product of three generations of marriages between first cousins — and that Nefertiti, Akhenaten’s chief wife, may in fact have been Tut’s mother.

Many Egyptologists believe there were probably one or two co-pharaohs between Akhenaten and Tutankhamun. Some, including Reeves, believe at least one of them may have been Nefertiti, who may have even ruled Egypt by herself even for just a few months. Finding her tomb could provide further insight into a period still largely obscured, despite intense worldwide interest in ancient Egypt.

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Famous Men Who’ve Died on the Crapper…..

Though there are many, many embarrassing ways to die, none seems to catch you more off-guard than dying on the toilet. Don’t get me wrong, dying on the toilet isn’t the most embarrassing way to plunge into death (trust me, I’ve read stories far worse that make me wonder how people go to the funeral without laughing), but I believe that it plays a bigger head trip on the person dying than any normal death. Picture it – sitting on your porcelain comfort seat, feeling safe and secure as you always do in this scenario when an assassin rams a spear through the inside of your toilet. All feelings of invulnerability are gone. Not to mention that it ensures a greater likelihood of tabloid photos shot at your death and wide spread rumors to circulate about what caused you to expire in the first place. “But that would only happen if you’re famous,” you say. Well you know what? Here are some of history’s best toilet travesties:
King Edmund “Ironside” II: The king of England from April 23 to November 30, 1016 who was mostly known for his efforts to fight off the Danes died on the toilet. Soldiers who were acting in favor of Edmund’s rival, King Canute, hid inside the lavatory and stabbed through his anus and into his bowels. Some regard this as merely a story, however, since no other explanation of his death has surfaced, this ‘story’ has been taken as fact by many. Given his death, I wonder if it would have been more appropriate to dub him “Ironslide. ”

King George II: The last king of Britain born outside of Britain had little control over anything in his life. The policies of his kingship had been made by the first de facto Prime Minister, Sir Robert Walpole. The only thing he seemed to be able to achieve during his kingship was a useless war with Spain, not being dethroned and petty squabbles between his father and son. His heart apparently had no control either, since he died of aortic dissection on the toilet. It happened after drinking chocolate for breakfast.

Evelyn Waugh: Another Brit! It seems at least somewhat ironic that the high society satirist who poked so much fun at England’s aristocracy died while on the toilet. Born October 28, 1903 he was the son of noted English publisher Arthur Waugh. Though his early works were dark and satirical (‘Decline and Fall’, ‘Vile Bodies’, ‘Black Mischief’, ect.), he also produced works of broader interest such as the ‘Sword of Honor’ trilogy. During the later years of his life, Waugh ballooned himself to a rounder physique which caused a decline and fall in his health. On April 10, 1966 Waugh went to Easter Mass. Afterward, he suffered a heart attack on the toilet of a priest. I wish I could’ve seen the face on the priest when he found Waugh.

Elvis Presley: Before you ask – no. There is no way I could have done this article without bringing up Elvis. We all know what he did in his life. His spectacular early career and his not so eloquent later career have been widely publicized. On August 16, 1977 Presley was found dead on his toilet in Graceland by his fiancée Ginger Alden. Though he was believed to have died from a heart attack assisted by gastrointestinal problems, many speculate that the amount of drugs he was taking might have aided his departure. Or maybe it was those peanut butter and banana sandwiches he ate.

Lenny Bruce: The comic known for his ‘sick humor’ was also known by the court system. In more ways than one, he managed to get banned from performing in major cities and was arrested on obscenity several times. To be fair, the only thing ‘sick’ in his humor was the lack of structure in his jokes, though at the time, I guess someone saying the dreaded F-word was just too much for some people and could easily be seen as ‘sick’. On August 3, 1966 Bruce was found dead on his toilet at age 40. The death was ruled as an accidental morphine overdose. In tabloid photos, you can see a syringe and a burned bottle cap. In the spirit of ‘sick humor’ I believe Bruce’s corpse should have been put on puppeteer strings and brought on stage for one last show.

Remember: always be completely aware of yourself at all times and if necessary, work up the courage to fight the Grim Reaper for enough time to die in a dignified fashion.

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England…..Rare ‘Amen’ glass auctioned for £43,000 in Shropshire..

A Jacobite “Amen” glass has been auctioned for £43,000 in Shropshire.

The glass, engraved with two verses of the Jacobite anthem, went under the hammer at Halls fine art auction house in Shrewsbury.

Halls said the glass was one of a number in the auction celebrating the movement that plotted against Protestant kings of the 17th and 18th Centuries.

The bids quickly exceeded pre-sales estimates of £20,000-£30,000, it added.

The glass was bought by a telephone bidder from London. Halls said it is among fewer than 40 known examples in the world.

‘Secret societies’

The collection containing the Lennoxlove Amen glass had belonged to the late Edward V. Phillips, who was a corn merchant.

Amen glasses were passed around in secret societies devoted to the restoration of a Catholic monarch, the auctioneers said.

Jeremy Lamond, Halls’ fine art director, said: “These glasses are testament to the fact that this was perhaps one of the few times in the history of alcohol when the glass was more dangerous to the imbiber than its contents.

“For those caught with such articles, penalties were severe, including imprisonment and, sometimes, execution.”

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Missing monarchs: The kings who did not rest in peace…..

A king may expect an elaborate tomb as a perk of the job but the fates often have something else in mind
DNA tests may be about to prove a skeleton found beneath a Leicester car park are the mortal remains of King Richard III.
And while it may seem extraordinary that a king’s grave could be lost, history shows the last of the Plantagenets was not the only one to suffer such indignity.
Here are seven English kings who have no confirmed grave.
Alfred the Great
Alfred, who turned back the tide of Viking conquest, died in 899 and was buried with due ceremony and pomp in the Old Minster in Winchester, Hampshire. His corpse was then moved twice, ending up across town in Hyde Abbey.
When Henry VIII moved to disband the monasteries in 1538, Hyde was dismantled. Tradition has it the graves of Alfred and his family were left undisturbed but subsequently ransacked during the construction of the town jail in 1788.
But Robin Iles, education officer for Winchester Museums, said the truth was uncertain: “The decorated tombs would have been an obvious target for those stripping the abbey of valuables in 1538 but there was also a lot of disturbance during the building of the prison. The truth is we don’t know what happened.
“An excavation in the 1990s confirmed where the tombs used to be and slabs now mark the spot.”
Harold II
As if being the last English king to have his country successfully invaded was not bad enough, Harold Godwinson’s undoubted bravery and political manoeuvring did not guarantee a respectful burial.
His death in 1066 fighting William the Conqueror at the battle of Hastings – either by an arrow in the eye, the swords of cavalry, or possibly both – apparently left the body so mangled only his common-law wife, the ornithologically named Edith Swannesha (Swan-Neck), could identify the remains.
Rosemary Nicolaou, from Battle Abbey museum, said what happened next is confused: “We are told Harold’s mother offered William a sum of gold equal to the weight of the body but William refused. He ordered it to be buried in secret to stop it becoming a shrine.
“After that we just don’t know. There are various stories including his mother finally getting the body or it being taken by monks to Waltham Abbey, but nothing has been proved”.
Henry I
A son of William the Conqueror, Henry seized the crown in August 1100 with a series of well organised political manoeuvres in the days after brother William II was killed in an apparent hunting accident. After Henry died in Normandy in December 1135, his corpse was brought back to England in singular style.
Jill Greenaway, collection care curator at Reading Museum, explained: “His body was embalmed, sewn into a bull’s hide and brought to Reading where in January 1136 he was buried in front of the High Altar of the abbey that he had founded in 1121.
“His tomb did not survive the dissolution of the monasteries by his namesake Henry VIII and we do not know what happened to his body.”
A small plaque marks the rough area of his grave but rumours place the exact spot under nearby St. James’ School.
After a reign so turbulent it was known as The Anarchy, it is perhaps no surprise Stephen also struggled for peace after his death in 1154. He was buried in a magnificent tomb in the newly constructed Faversham Abbey in Kent but – in what became a pattern – it was demolished on the orders of Henry VIII.
Local historian Jack Long said: “In John Stow’s ‘Annales’ of 1580, he repeats the local legend that the royal tombs were desecrated for the lead coffins and any jewellery that the bodies might have worn, and the bones thrown into the creek.
“(It adds) they were retrieved and reburied in the church of St Mary of Charity in Faversham. There is an annexe (in the church) dating from the period but which has no original markings.
“To the best of my knowledge, no work has ever been undertaken to establish exactly what exists behind or below this mysterious annexe.”
Edward V
Richard III plays a central role in one of the most emotionally charged stories in English history. In April 1483 Edward IV died leaving his 12-year-old son, also called Edward, as heir.
The dying king had appointed his brother, Richard of Gloucester, as the boy’s protector. In short order Edward was placed in the Tower of London, had his coronation postponed and was then barred from the throne after his parents’ marriage was declared illegitimate. In June Richard was declared king.
Along with his younger brother Richard, Edward was never seen outside the tower again.
In 1674, the skeletons of two children were discovered during building work in the tower and were reburied in Westminster Abbey under the names of the missing children but controversy rages as to who they really were – as well as the true fate of the princes and the identity of any killer.
Oliver Cromwell
Admittedly not a king, but Cromwell was certainly a head of state. And most of him has no grave.
After leading the Parliamentarian forces to victory in the civil war against Charles I, Cromwell took the reins of power until his death in 1658 and was buried in Westminster Abbey.
When Charles II came to the throne in 1660, his supporters decided to enact a peculiarly spiteful form of vengeance, exhuming Cromwell’s body and hanging it on the scaffold at Tyburn near modern day Marble Arch.
John Goldsmith, curator of the Cromwell Museum in Huntingdon, said: “It was then cut down and beheaded. Despite various stories about it being spirited away, his body was almost certainly dumped in a nearby pit.
“His embalmed head was later removed from a spike and went from owner to owner – including being an attraction in a travelling show – until eventually being reburied at Sidney Sussex College, Cambridge in 1960.”
James II
Chased from the throne in 1688 for attempting to restore the absolute monarchy of his father Charles I, James lived in exile in Paris until his death and anatomical dissection in 1701.
He refused burial in the belief he would get his place in Westminster Abbey and the coffin was put in the Chapel of Saint Edmund in the Church of the English Benedictines in the Rue St Jacques.
His brain was sent to the Scots College in Paris and put in a silver case on top of a column, his heart went to the Convent of the Visitandine Nuns at Chaillot and his intestines were divided between the English Church of St Omer and the parish church of St Germain-en-Laye.
Aidan Dodson, author of The Royal Tombs of Great Britain, said: “It all disappeared in the French Revolution of 1789. The mob attacked the churches and his lead coffin was sold for scrap, as was the silver case for his brain.
“The church (of St Germain-en-Laye) was demolished but then rebuilt in 1824 and during this his intestines were found and reinterred – so a bit of him survives.”
And one who was just mislaid… Charles I
After losing the Civil War, Charles’s fortunes took a downward turn when he was executed in 1649. He was buried quietly in St George’s Chapel, in Windsor Castle, after being denied a place in Westminster Abbey.
Mr Dodson said: “He was put in with Henry VIII and Jane Seymour but the problem was that they forgot where that entire vault was.
“This was also an excuse for Charles II to pocket the money parliament had given him for his dad’s new tomb.”
Workmen rediscovered the vault by accident in 1813 and found a velvet draped coffin with the missing monarch’s name on it. To satisfy their curiosity, a group of notables opened the casket and, sure enough, found a body with a detached head and a pointy beard.

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