Thursday, January 22, 2015

Story of Tutankhamun mask (1): Egyptian Museum faces heat over alleged botched care of Tut mask

Golden Funerary Mask of Tutankhamun
CAIRO: The mask of Tutankhamun, one of the most well-known images associated with Egypt, may have been the victim of shoddy restoration, as a number of visitors have noticed traces of glue on the beard of the famous mask.

The Cairo Post witnessed clear traces of glue between the mask and the beard holding them together, as well as glue on the sides of the beard.

This is not the first time the Museum has been accused of improper care of its artifacts. Egyptian Museum Director Mahmoud al-Halwagy denied in mid-November that Tutankhamen’s mask was unintentionally damaged during a restoration process, according to the Antiquities Ministry’s Facebook page.

It was reported that in October, several archaeological conservators at the under-construction Grand Egyptian Museum submitted an urgent memorandum to Antiquities Minister Mamdouh el-Damaty demanding “immediate investigations regarding the odd appearance of the mask after the restoration work it encountered in August,” Al-Watan reported.

Misplacement of the ceremonial beard with spots of adhesive on the neck of the mask, scratches in the surface of the mask’s right cheekbone and a reported “unusual luminosity” of the artifact as a whole are among the concerns raised in the memorandum, according to Al-Watan.

“The mask is in good condition and the beard has been attached properly. It is obvious by comparing the photos of the mask before and after the restoration,” said Halwagy, adding that the adhesives at the beard of the mask were left during earlier restoration work.
Source: Cairo Post– By/Rany Mostafa

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