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ASCLEPIADES

Egyptian tomb raider dies from 'curse'

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Salve!

 

By Harry de Quetteville in Berlin Last Updated: 2:06am BST 25/08/2007

 

Legend has it that the royal tombs of ancient Egypt were sealed with monstrous curses against all those who trespassed into the domain of the afterlife.

In the tomb of the boy pharaoh, Tutankhamun, hieroglyphs were said to have spelled out a dreadful end for all those who entered.

Howard Carter, the lead archaeologist who opened the tomb in 1923, wrote that "all sane people should dismiss such inventions with contempt".

But a German man has decided the curse of the mummies is definitely not a myth - and has therefore returned a plundered ancient Egyptian carving which he says has fatally cursed his family.

The relic was stolen three years ago from the Valley of Kings, near Luxor, home to the tombs of dozens of Pharaohs and Egyptian nobles who were buried there some three millennia ago.

The unnamed man decided to take it home to Germany with him as a souvenir of his trip.

It was on his return to Europe that the trouble began, according to an anonymous note that accompanied the carving when it was recently returned to the Egyptian embassy in Berlin.

Instead of enjoying his stolen treasure, the thief was struck down with an inexplicable fatigue and fever, progressing to paralysis, and ultimately death

 

Sequitur

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Well... that'll teach him not to steal ( again ) :lol: Now we all know that one of the causes of these deaths is the fungi on the tombs' walls. Curses were't found only in Tut's tomb, but in tombs of pharaohs before Neb-Kheperu-Re. The first one that comes to my mind is a curse written on the walls of Unas's pyramid. Ancient cultures were extremely superstitious, and the Egyptians made no exception. The main purpose of a curse was to keep the ancient thieves away from the precious objects found within the tombs :) .

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I am happy if the myth(?) of curses on the grave robbers work, since it might curve thefts.

 

However I can not understand why there should be other then very minor causality (fungus etc). People believe in the myth since they only hear about the people who have been "cursed". People never hear about the thousands who got away with items and lived happy ever after.

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One of my favorite sayings hold true here: Karma's a beyotch...don't temp her...

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A footnote: inhalation is a particularly effective way to poison or be poisoned (over and above ingestion which is the method most people consider as "poisoning"). Skin ingestion and direct conduction via the ear are also very potent . Interestingly as temperature rises the potential of inhalation to poison also increases, those who have visited the Valley of the Kings will be well aware of the suffocating dead heat that accumulates in the shallow tombs, (the deeper ones like Merneptah and Tutmosis III arent exactly cool , but are coolish if airless). Given that inhaled parasites are still very tricky to find (Borrelia is a good modern example causing lymes disease, the number of parasitic vectors is actually unknown and the disease may be far more widespread than generally acknowledged). So what better place to send your probationary gang members than a suffocatingly hot tomb full of spores? Anyone exposed to the fruiting bodies of dry rot (Serpula lacrymans) will know how nasty the bronchial effects of such a "normal " spore are.

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