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Howard Carter's Google doodle: Who was King Tutankhamun?

According to speculations, Tutankhamun was assassinated, while the consensus is that his death was accidental.

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Updated:May 9, 2012, 5:42 PM IST
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Howard Carter's Google doodle: Who was King Tutankhamun?
According to speculations, Tutankhamun was assassinated, while the consensus is that his death was accidental.
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New Delhi: In a bid to celebrate the 138th birth anniversary of Howard Carter, the discoverer of the tomb of Tutankhamun, Google today replaced its usual logo with a doodle that includes a wide array of Egyptian treasures that cover the term "Google" and make it barely visible.

The doodle also has the tomb of Tutankhamen, which stands at the centre. The doodle features several other elements related to Tutankhamun and the tomb.

The doodle pays homage to an English archaeologist and Egyptologist Howard Carter, who is noted as a discoverer of the tomb of Tutankhamun in 1922.

But who was Tutankhamun? King Tutankhamun was an Egyptian pharaoh of the 18th dynasty. His original name, Tutankhaten, means "Living Image of Aten". As a prince he was known as Tutankhaten. He ascended to the throne in 1333 BC, at the age of 9 or 10.

When he became king, he tied knot with his half-sister, Ankhesenepatan. Considering his age, the king had very powerful advisers including General Horemheb, the Vizier Ay and Maya.

Tutankhamun later reversed many changes that were made during his father's reign. It is believed that he ended the worship of the god Aten and restored the god Amun to supremacy.

King Tutankhamun died at about the age of 19, but there are no surviving records of Tutankhamun's final days. And, what led to his death has been the subject of considerable debate.

According to speculations, Tutankhamun was assassinated, while the consensus is that his death was accidental.

Coming back to the doodle, Howard's important contribution to his field of archaeology was the discovery of the tomb of Tutankhamun.

On 4 November 1922, Carter's excavation group found the steps leading to Tutankhamun's tomb, by far the best preserved and most intact pharaonic tomb ever found in the Valley of the Kings. Following his discovery, Howard Carter retired from archaeology and became a part-time agent for museums, including the Cleveland Museum of Art and the Detroit Institute of Arts. Carter died of lymphoma in Kensington, London, on March 2, 1939 at the age of 64.

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