Origin of Tutankhamun’s curse unwrapped… a journalist mad at not getting scoop

Within six weeks of the death, another visitor to the tomb, financier George Jay Gould, died of a similar lung infection.

A year later, Hugh Evelyn White, an Egyptologist who participated in the opening of the tomb, took his own life, leaving a note saying he was “cursed.”

Over the next decade, all deaths with ties to the grave were picked up by journalists as evidence of the curse.

In 1924, Sir Archibald Douglas Reid fell ill the day after Tutankhamun’s mummy was x-rayed and died three days later.

Two years later, Aaron Ember, an American Egyptologist who was present at the tomb opening, died in a house fire.

AC Mace, a member of Carter’s excavation team, died in April 1928 after suffering from pleurisy and pneumonia in his last years.

Richard Bethell, Lord Carnarvon’s secretary and the first person after Carter to enter the tomb, died in suspicious circumstances in 1929.

“Exotic Deaths Was a Gold Mine”

Ella Al Shamahi, a paleoanthropologist and host of the documentary, said: “For the newspapers, these exotic deaths were a gold mine and they started running stories about a curse of Tutankhamun. Reporters kept adding names to the list, hungry for stories.”

Skeptics have pointed out that many others who visited or helped discover the tomb lived long and healthy lives, including Carter, who died of lymphoma in 1939 at the age of 64.

However, when Carter’s canary was killed by a cobra in his home, Weigall blamed the curse and reported that a royal cobra, the same as that on Tutankhamen’s headdress, had entered the home in revenge.

The documentary noted that some of the deaths may have been caused by bacteria released from the grave, affecting people who already had chronic lung disease.

Tutankhamun: Secrets of The Tomb airs Sunday at 8 p.m. on Channel 4. Origin of Tutankhamun’s curse unwrapped… a journalist mad at not getting scoop

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