Friday, August 19, 2011

Hatshepsut Poisoned?

 There is a study going on at the University of Bonn on a lovely little bottle bearing cartouches of king Hatshepsut. The researchers have discovered from the dried residue inside the bottle that it contains a carcinogenic hydrocarbon which may have poisoned Hatshepsut?

I have heard of the bottle before but have no idea of it's provenance, I would think that just because Hatshepsut's cartouches are on the bottle that it is highly unlikely that it actually belonged to the king? I would think that putting the reigning kings cartouches on objects was how it was probably done at the workshops where objects were created and that it is not necessarily a personal possession of the king?

Very interesting findings though as the ointment in the bottle may have been a product produced for the population and not just the king? It would be interesting to see if residue of the hydrocarbon can be found in any of the royal mummies in Cairo?

To learn more about Hatshepsut check out Stuart Tyler's Hatshepsut Project

Image: Associated Press


Geoff Carter said...

I thought she died of smoking Fags and snorting cocaine - or was that another mummy!

tim said...

Geoff your right that's her but she was ALSO putting on toxic ointments.

The question might be asked as to who gave her the toxic substance and what was their knowledge of the product they were giving her?

Geoff Carter said...

There may have not been a lot of experience of the premium products used in the court.
I suppose it is a bit like the use of lead [pb] based cosmetics in the Elizabethan period.