25 Crazy Myths And Facts About Ancient Egypt

Posted by , Updated on August 3, 2017


When you think of ancient Egypt, what are the first things that come to your mind? The pyramids, right? Maybe the pharaohs? But ancient Egypt was so much more than just that! It was one of the most successful, advanced, and long-lasting civilizations ever. We did some research on this topic to provide you with some cool ancient Egyptian facts and myths you might not know. If you want to learn more about ancient Egypt, check out these 25 Crazy Myths And Facts About Ancient Egypt.

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While the wives of Egyptian pharaohs were very powerful and highly regarded, few women achieved the status of sole rulers of ancient Egypt. Some of the most notable ancient Egyptian queens are Nefertiti, Hatshepsut, Neithikret, Sobekneferu, and – most famously – Cleopatra.

NefertitiSource: ancient-egypt-online.com

Talking about Cleopatra, this prominent ancient Egyptian queen was described as “woman of surpassing beauty” who was “brilliant to look upon.” However, recent studies based on her ancient busts and coin portraits suggest she actually was rather average-looking, possibly hook-nosed and even manly.

CleopatraSource: heritagedaily.com

A popular myth has it that it was Napoleon's soldiers who caused the Sphinx's nose to break off. However, sketches of the Sphinx created decades before Napoleon showed that it had been missing earlier. Even today, it is still not known who or what caused the legendary Sphinx to lose its nose.

SphinxSource: smithsonianjourneys.org

Ancient Egyptian texts as well as some modern studies of mummies suggest that a terrifying parasite known as the guinea worm was common in ancient Egypt. Once the parasite was mature, it emerged from his host's skin. The worm could be about 1 m (over 3 in) long. The process of leaving the host's body was extremely painful for the infected person.

guinea wormSource: who.int

Most people think that the Tomb of King Tut (Tutankhamun) was intact when Howard Carter discovered it in 1922. Indeed, even though King Tut was not a major pharaoh, his tomb was packed with marvelous treasures. However, his tomb turned out to not be fully intact. The tomb had been robbed several times during antiquity.

Tomb of King TutSource: touregypt.ne

Photos: Feature Image: Pixabay (public domain; border added), 25. ArcheologoStatua di Bes, I sec. d.C., marmo bianco, da Colonna (Monti Albani)CC BY-SA 3.0, 24-23. pixabay (public domain), 22. pixabay (public domain), 21. pixabay (public domain), 20. Keith Schengili-Roberts, SenetBoard-InscribedWithNameOfAmunhotepIII BrooklynMuseumCC BY-SA 3.0, 19. wikimedia commons (public domain), 18. Michael Gwyther-Jones via flickr, CC BY-2.0, 17. Ekem at the English language Wikipedia, CC BY 3.0 (unported), 16-15. wikimedia commons (public domain), 14. Nina at the Norwegian bokmål language WikipediaKheops-PyramidCC BY-SA 3.0, 13. Bedoyere at English WikipediaColossus of Ramesses II restoredCC BY 3.0, 12. anonymous, Tutankhamun-mask-retouchedCC BY-SA 3.0, 11. CaptMondo, IvoryLabelOfDen-BritishMuseum-August19-08CC BY-SA 3.0, 10. ddenisen (D. Denisenkov)Canopic container Lid (Tutankhamun)CC BY-SA 2.0, 9. Keith Schengili-Roberts, AncientEgyptianMummy-Antjau-CloseUp-ROMCC BY-SA 3.0, 8. AlchemicaRiver-Nile-near-AswanCC BY-SA 3.0, 7. Institute for the Study of the Ancient World, The Pyramids at Giza (III)CC BY 2.0, 6. Anonymous, Ancient Egyptian bronze statue of a reclining cat and kittenCC BY-SA 1.0, 5. wikimedia commons (public domain), 4. Walters Art MuseumEgyptian – Head of a Queen, Perhaps Cleopatra II or Cleopatra III – Walters 22407 (2)CC BY-SA 3.0, 3. Daniel MayerGiza Plateau – Great Sphinx – front viewCC BY-SA 4.0, 2. wikimedia commons (public domain), 1. zh.wikipedia.org (public domain)

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