There appears to be a lot of mystery surrounding King Tut mother’s life, and there are several reasons for this obscurity. It could partly be to King Tut’s father, Akhenaten, bringing radical changes to politics and religion during his reign; therefore, causing much turmoil amongst the population. It seems that most of the royal records that held the key to Tutankhamen’s family lineage were destroyed soon after Akhenaten’s death. Akhenaten upset the balance of the culture and region so much so, that many pharaohs after him went to great lengths to erase him from history. It looks as if his son also partook in this practice.
So who was King Tut’s mother? Many Egyptologists concur that it is most likely Nefertiti or Kiya. Nefertiti was the famous queen often depicted with Akhenaten and logically could be Tutankhamen’s mother. She is often seen in many portraits with Akhenaten portrayed as “near” status to the pharaoh. The other woman is known as Kiya. Little is known about her origins or her life. It was believed that she was a foreign princess that became and remained Akhenaten’s second wife. She appears to be an important figure in Ancient Egypt and for the Pharaoh Akhenaten and was often referred to as, “The greatly beloved wife of the King of Upper and Lower Egypt.”
The jury is still out as to which one of these great women was truly King Tut’s mother. Many say it is Nefertiti; however, others believe it is Kiya. As more evidence comes to light, the facts seem to point to Kiya. A great belief is that Nefertiti was nothing more than a step-mother to King Tut. This is due to the fact that many of the tomb paintings and reliefs of Nefertiti do not show her with King Tut as a child; although, she is often depicted with Akhenaten and their six daughters.
Because Nefertiti’s mummy has not been discovered as yet, scientists cannot compare Tutankhamen’s DNA to determine if this queen was the true mother. For this reason alone, many will continue to refer to Nefertiti as King Tut’s step mother until more evidence can disprove this theory.
Kiya: King Tut’s Mother
More things seem to point to Kiya being King Tut’s true mother. New evidence has even come to light that now proves the young pharaoh was most likely a product of incest. This new DNA evidence from samples taken in 2008, suggests that Kiya and Akhenaten were siblings. This would not have been out of the ordinary as many Ancient Egyptian monarchs wanted to ensure that their bloodlines remained royal; therefore, common practice was to marry within families. It should be noted that King Tut was also married to his half-sister Ankhesenamun, which further substantiates this incestuous practice.
If the two siblings were the product of Amenhotep III and Queen Tiye, this would then exclude Queen Kiya from being a foreign princess. It should also be noted that many other experts believe “inappropriate analysis techniques” were used to determine these facts; therefore, dispelling these family-tree theories.
KV63: King Tut’s Mother’s Tomb
King Tut mother’s tomb is believed to have been discovered in the Valley of the Kings; however, no mummy was actually located. The tomb is next to King Tut’s burial site but remains shrouded with mystery due to the absence of an actual body. The tomb is known as KV63 and was found as a cache filled with coffins and storage jars. Many of the coffins yielded nothing except the sixth one which contained six pillows. These pillows remain a mystery as well, but it is thought these pillows could have been important items belonging to the queen during her lifetime and could have been used as bedding while her body went through the mummification process. Of course this is all still speculation; however, if this embalming storage was in fact King Tut’s mother’s tomb, it would have been in conjunction with King Tut’s final wishes; that he be buried next to his mother.