When the entrance to the Tomb of King Tutankhamun (KV62) was discovered by the great explorer Howard Carter and his financier Lord Carnarvon, they could never have dreamed of the treasures which awaited them inside. These two men worked together to track down King Tut’s burial place, as explained in a Heritage Key video with Lord Carnarvon’s modern day ancestors the Earl and Countess of Carnarvon (Watch the Video).
Egyptology photographer Sandro Vannini has spent much of the past decade photographing the fascinating artefacts discovered inside KV62, as well as capturing the tomb itself on film. But an angle that isn’t seen very often is that of the tomb’s entrance – the path walked down numerous times by Carter and his team as they excavated arguably the greatest find in archaeology.
Sandro Vannini’s Photography
As one of the leading archaeology photographers, Sandro Vannini has honed his skills for photographing the ancient wonders of Egypt in their best light. Armed with his Canon EOS 5D, Sandro trekked the desert sands and took these images of the walk up to the Tomb of King Tutankhamun. Follow in the footsteps of Howard Carter and his team of archaeologists, not just through Sandro’s photographs, but by registering for your free Heritage Key account and exploring the Virtual Valley of the Kings in King Tut Virtual!
Sandro Vannini is of course no stranger to photographing the beauty of such tombs and treasures of Egypt, as his recent book The Lost Tombs of Thebes:Life in Paradise, authored by Dr Hawass is evidence of. You can read Sandro’s account on how he took the photographs right here on Heritage Key, as well as watching him in action in a video featuring Dr Hawass and Dr Janice Kamrin (Watch the video here), and check out his latest book – A Secret Voyage.
Don’t miss out on new treasures!
This post is part of a series focussing on amazing photographs from ancient Egypt. Keep checking back as well keep adding new images by Sandro Vannini. To make sure you don’t miss out on any of the updates, simply subscribe by email to receive notifications when new images are uploaded. For the more digitally advanced, there’s also an RSS feed with updates available.
See More Amazing Photography by Sandro
Have a look at some of the other stunning photographs by Sandro Vannini here at Heritage Key:
- The Ceremonial Chariot
- External Trappings of the Mummy
- Cosmetic Jar with Recumbent Lion
- Golden Mask of King Tutankhamun
We’ll be sitting down with our favourite photographer for an extended chat soon, so if you have any questions for Sandro we’ll send the answers straight to you!
The Entrance to the Tomb of King Tutankhamun (KV62)
Howard Carter went searching for the Tomb of King Tutankhamun and unearthed the entrance in 1922. Upon entering the tomb, birth was given to the most famous dialogue in archaeological exploration. As Carter entered the tomb, Lord Carnarvon called “What do you see?”, Carter looked around him awestruck, and said “I see wonderful things”. The ensuing artefacts captured the public’s imagination as the world’s press scrambled to report the stunning finds.
The entrance of the tomb was saved from being raided by tomb robbers due to a collapse whilst construction of another tomb – that of Ramesses VI – was being carried out above it. The partial caving in made the entrance tunnel impassible for robbers, and meant that much of the treasures inside KV62 remained intact. Although the tomb was broken into by ancient thieves, they concentrated mainly on stealing unguents and perfumes which were easily transportable and harder to trace.
Talks of the Tomb of King Tutankhamun being closed off to the public persist, as worries about the damage being done to ancient tombs by tourism raises concerns that the ancient heritage may be lost. The tombs could disappear in between 150 and 500 years, warns Zahi Hawass, Secretary General of the Egyptian Supreme Council of Antiquities. However, such moves as closing off the famous KV62 tomb would undoubtedly harm Egypt’s tourism, which accounts for a larger slice of their economy.
The Getty Conservation Institute also moved in on the Tomb of King Tut to look at brown spots formed on the walls of KV62. The spots have been present on the wall since discovered by Howard Carter, although they have never been analysed yet. Some people think the brown spots may be getting bigger, and suggest they may be bacteria or fungus.
Then there’s talk of a replica tomb replacing the actual tomb in order to preserve it. Although this would allow the preservation of the ancient burial site, tourists would complain about not being to experience “the real thing”. So begins something of a cache-22 situation as Egypt weighs up the cost of damage to the tombs against the potential damage to their economy if they lose tourism to the Valley of the Kings.
HDVideo: Discovering King Tut – Lord Carnarvon and Howard Carter
The 8th Earl of Carnarvon, George Herbert and his wife, 8th Countess of Carnarvon, Fiona Herbert, talk to Heritage Key about their ancestor Lord Carnarvon and the archaeologist he funded, Howard Carter. They discuss the relationship between the two men and how they set about the amazing discovery of the legendary tomb of King Tutankhamun, in the Valley of the Kings.
You can watch more great Heritage Key videos by going to our Video Page, as well as finding out more about Ancient Egypt on Heritage Key, as well as being able to explore the Valley of the Kings and the fascinating KV62 – King Tutankhamun’s tomb – in 3D in our exciting virtual experience! Also be sure to keep up to date on all new postings about Sandro’s photography from Egypt by subscribing to our feed, simply by entering your email address above.