King Tut’s Tomb: Antechamber

annex antechamber


King Tut’s Tomb Chambers

The Antechamber is the first room that can be seen when walking into Tutankhamun’s (King Tut) tomb. This chamber is the main hub as all the other rooms can only be accessed through this chamber. Black and white photos taken by Harry Burton during the excavation, shows the room filled with treasure and somewhat organized; however, this appears to still be a modest-filled tomb when compared to what other more prominent pharaohs may have had included in their tombs. No one knows why this tomb was not as elaborately dressed as other pharaohs from Ancient Egypt were thought to have been. Several theories rest on the fact that he had a short lifespan, and there was not enough time to build a larger or well crafted tomb such as other pharaohs had done before him.

Though the tomb is modest for a New Kingdom pharaoh, to modern spectators King Tut’s tomb is considered grand. As Howard Cater first entered the tomb, he was struck with amazement. His recorded account of the Antechamber is as follows: “At first I could see nothing, the hot air escaping from the chamber causing the candle flames to flicker, but presently, as my eyes grew accustomed to the light, details of the room within emerged slowly from the mist, strange animals, statues and gold – everywhere the glint of gold.”

The Antechamber alone contained many items such as couches, chests, baskets, large statues, beds, and stools. In all, there were roughly 700 objects that were catalogued and photographed by Howard Carter and Harry Burton just in this room alone.

These objects were probably used by the pharaoh in his everyday proceedings and were included to follow him into the afterlife. Some of the more popular items within this room are the three animal couches that contain a hippopotamus, a lion, and a cow’s head. These three couches are made of wood and gilded in gold. Though the exact use of these objects remains mysterious, it is thought they were used during the rituals and mummification process. Because these items were large, they were also used as “shelves” to help store and organize the funerary equipment of the young pharaoh.

Along with those three items, King Tut’s throne was also placed within this room. To the left of the tomb’s entrance are chariots stacked next to one another. These three chariots were mostly used for showcasing the pharaoh during public events. A fan found in the tomb indicates that one of Tutankhamun’s past time events was likely hunting for ostriches.

Even more amazing are the two large life-sized statues of Tutankhamun found guarding the entrance into the burial chamber. These statues are black with golden head caps, skirts, and sandals. These two statues were positioned facing each other, each with their own inscriptions, and each having a different head piece.

Many things such as boxes, arrows, vases, linen cloth, jars, shrines, chests, and footstools as well as other priceless treasures were found within this chamber
The Antechamber did not have colorful walls filled with hieroglyphics, hymns, prayers, or great achievements that showcased Tutankhamun as would have been expected for a pharaoh of Ancient Egypt. Rather, the walls are bare and lacked the typical drawings. It’s almost as if there hadn’t been enough time to paint the whole tomb.