If Hollywood has taught us anything about Egyptian pharaohs it's that they usually spent their time heroically riding around on chariots, overseeing the construction of massive polyhedron monuments and cursing anyone who wanders into their tombs - which is usually Brendan Fraser.
However, recent discoveries into the life of perhaps the most well-known pharaoh, Tutankhamun, has revealed the boy king wasn't exactly the most imposing figure. He was certainly no Imhotep, that's for sure.
The Real Tutankhamun
A new BBC documentary, Tutankhamun: The Truth Uncovered, believes they've recreated the most accurate representation of the 19 year old ruler yet. Rumors state Tutankhamun met his demise in a chariot incident, however the new documentary claims King Tut would have had trouble standing on a chariot, let alone riding one.
The study, which utilized modern scientific experiments on the mummy of Tutankhamun, reveals he likely suffered from a club foot and a genetic bone-wasting disease which meant he would be unable to walk without an aid. A theory supported by the fact several walking sticks were found in his tomb.
Furthermore, using CT scans they also discovered Tut suffered a fracture to one of the strongest bones in his body before his death. According to expert Dr. Hutan Ashrafian, such an injury is relatively rare, but is common with epileptics.
Born of Incest?
But perhaps most revealing of all is evidence which adds credence to claims Tutankhamun was the product of incest between his father Akhenaten and his father's sister - which isn't terribly surprising considering the list of genetic defects it is claimed he had. By using DNA analysis, researchers were able to essentially confirm the theory which first developed in 2010. However, we shouldn't be too judgmental of King Tut's parents, incest - including between brothers and sisters - was relatively common in Ancient Egypt and was often seen as a method of maintaining royal lineage.
So What Killed Tutankhamun?
Given what we've just learned, the issue to figuring out how old Tut died isn't complex because of a lack of options, but because of a multitude of them. The poor guy had so many ailments, it's hard to pin point which one could have ended him.
The chariot death scenario is still greatly contested, and back in 2013 an Egyptian team conducted a virtual autopsy with the aid of car-crash investigators. They concluded Tut was killed when a chariot crashed into him while he was on his knees - perhaps because he has fallen off his own.
However, this new study contradicts this. Not only is there the issue of the club foot, but it has emerged that all but one of his bone fractures occurred after he had died. The current hypothesis states he probably died from complications resulting from malaria and a broken leg, which could have occurred due to an epileptic fit. However, a blow to the head, sickle cell disease, Marfan syndrome, Antley-Bixler syndrome and a whole host of other diseases have also been mentioned in connection to his death.
Basically, Tutankhamun was one mummy which wouldn't have given Brendan Fraser much trouble.
How do you think King Tut died?
Source: The Mirror