History, art and curses: how the Portuguese press reported the discovery of the tomb of Tutankhamun

José das Candeias Sales, Susana Mota

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It is certainly no exaggeration to say that the pharaoh Tutankhamun is among the bestknown pharaohs by non-experts in Egyptology. It may even be said that he is the best known of them all. However, this is not because of his exceptional or far-reaching governmental acts to the history of Egypt of his time. In fact, having ascended to the throne as a child, and have died before he reached the age of 20, the young child who ruled Egypt in the 14th century BC for about 10 years (1333-1323 BC) is best known for the exceptional discovery of his tomb (KV 62) in the Valley of the Kings by Howard Carter and his patron Lord Carnarvon.
The amazing discovery that occurred on the 4th November of 1922, the official opening of the tomb, and the ten years of excavation that followed were unveiled in the international press in an unusual and unprecedented way. As a result of this massive publication of news about the discovery and the excavation of the tomb of Tutankhamun, the name of the virtually incognito 12th pharaoh of the New Kingdom, and of the main players in this “wonderful discovery in the Valley” became well known for millions of readers around the world.
The research project Tutankhamon em Portugal. Relatos na imprensa portuguesa (1922-1939), aims, in the context of the Reception of Antiquity studies, to understand how the Portuguese press reported the discovery of the tomb of Tutankhamun. Portugal was, in the early 20th century, a country with no direct connection with any archaeological work in Egypt, and the press was dominated by the political troubled reality of the time. Thus,
it is our goal to understand whether, even in this particular reality, Carter’s great archaeological discovery had an impact on the Portuguese press, and in what form the discovery was release to the public.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages1
Publication statusPublished - 2019
EventInternational Congress ’In thy arms I lost myself’.: Images, Preceptipons and Productions in/of Antiquity - NOVA FCSH, Lisboa, Portugal
Duration: 9 Oct 201911 Oct 2019


ConferenceInternational Congress ’In thy arms I lost myself’.


  • Tutankhamun
  • Portuguese press
  • History
  • Art
  • Curses


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