October 17,2002

THE SAGA OF TUTANKHAMEN'S SKULL X-RAYS



Before reading further I suggest that you print this "Epistle to the World" because I shall refrain from highlighting special aspects; the details are important and the eleven pages cannot be properly digested by cursory glances at a screen. Although I had mentally committed myself to monthly installments there are occasions in these fast moving times when one feels forced to deviate from this pattern. Too much is happening which deserves to be commented upon. The evening of Sunday, October 6 was one such event when the Discovery Channel presented "The Assassination of King Tut." In this pseudo-documentary the English-speaking world finally received the answer as to who had murdered Tutankhamen, the last descendant of Egypt's fabled 18th Dynasty. The mystery of the king's sudden death, which has puzzled Egyptologists for decades, was solved by none other than a pair of detectives from my neighboring cities of Provo and Ogden. We were told that a set of skull X-rays had been released to them from England for their investigation. These produced "vital evidence for the detectives" and allowed them to finger the killer. Now at long last "justice has been done" for the unfortunate victim and he "can rest in peace." It had been Ay, the Prime Minister, who in the waning years of his life, killed the frail handicapped Tut in order to usurp the throne. Since I made a more or less "cameo" appearance in this Machwerk (the word has no direct English counterpart but denotes a piece of fake artistry), I owe it to my friends and readers to set the record straight.

I have had a long standing interest in Egyptian history and when I saw on one of my periodic trips to Vienna a book by Vandenberg Nofrete, Echnaton und ihre Zeit, I bought it right away. What I read in this book during the middle 1980's literally set this whole show in motion. It's obvious that God's mills grind slowly. The key sentences when translated from German read:

"Radiologic examinations of the mummy revealed that the young pharaoh did not die of natural causes and, therefore, urgently needed this tomb [which had been hastily prepared and was not originally intended for him]. Tut-ench-Amun has a hole [Loch] in the posterior portion of his skull [Hinterkopf] as it might have resulted from a club or spear tip. Did the little king die from the hand of a murderer? Many regard Eje [Ay] the 'Father of the God' and successor of Tut-ench-Amun, as the murderer; an assumption which has not yet been fully validated."

The words "hole in the skull" clearly raised the interest of the professional neurologist and I immediately decided to follow through on this. Where are these X-rays and what do they really show? was the question. But Vandenberg had written for the general public and had, therefore, not provided references for his statement. There are, however, other sources and the Cambridge Ancient History has a well deserved excellent reputation. It contained a statement by Cyril Aldred, a highly respected Egyptologist:

"He [Tutankhamen] died in his nineteenth year, perhaps as the result of a wound in the region of his left ear which penetrated the skull and resulted in a cerebral haemorrhage. How this lesion was caused must remain a mystery, but the nature and seat of the injury make it more likely to be the result of a battle wound or an accident than the work of an assassin."

Now we no longer have just a skull defect but also a brain hemorrhage. Furthermore it is not in the back of the head but in the region of the left ear, and young Tut wasn't murdered after all. Where did Aldred get his information from? As a scientist he gave the reference which read "The Times, Science Report, 25 October 1969." A trip to the public library followed, the article was located and printed. The headline of this brief note read "Violent death of Tutankhamen." The essential sentences were:

"Examination of the mummy by Professor R.G. Harrison and Dr. R.C. Connolly of the anatomy department at Liverpool University, has revealed wounds that resemble brain damage sustained by a violent blow on the head.

X-rays of the pharaoh's head have shown up a thinning of the bone at the back of the skull, Professor Harrison said yesterday. His diagnosis is that the thinning was caused by a cerebral haemorrhage resulting from a blow to the head."

I found out later that the statement was based on a BBC documentary which had been shown in the UK in 1969 and will be discussed later.

All right; now we no longer have a skull defect but only a thinning of the bone caused by bleeding in the brain. Thus, the question remained what did these X-rays really show? But at least there were now two names and an address. This is how my correspondence with Mr. Connolly, Senior Lecturer at the Anatomy department of Liverpool University, started and which thanks to my compulsive nature survived the trip from Michigan to retirement in Utah. He was one of the key members of Harrison's expedition which actually had as its goal to investigate the kinship of Tutankhamen with a mummy that had previously been thought as belonging to Akhenaten but is now regarded as that of the ephemeral Smenkhare, who was either co-regent or for a short time successor of the heretic pharaoh. Precise data are lacking. As a result of their examinations Harrison suggested on anatomic and Connolly on serologic grounds that Tutankhamen and Smenkhare may have been brothers. This important scientific finding was, however, in the public mind overshadowed by the sensation the skull X-rays had caused. When I wrote to the Chairman of the anatomy department in the summer of 1986 my letter was answered by Mr. Connolly who wrote:

"Before Professor Harrison died, we were working on an extensive analysis of the x-rays of several Dynastic specimens including Tutankhamun but this is still incomplete. I have all the x-rays and am hoping to complete the study in the not too far distant future and I shall give you the information about publication.

We haven't published anything beyond the 1972 Antiquity but I may produce a report before publication of the main comparative study because several workers have been seeking information specifically about Tutankhamun."

I thanked Connolly for his information and asked him to inform me about the final results of his investigations. I also made a trip to the University Library in Detroit and unearthed two relevant articles by Harrison. One, dated 1971, was hidden away in a journal called Buried History under the title "Post Mortem on Two Pharaohs. Was Tutankhamen's Skull Fractured?" The second article was the mentioned 1972 report in Antiquity with the simple title "The Remains of Tutankhamun." This article is a classic because it provides most valuable evidence about how Carter and Derry's "autopsy" of the pharaoh in 1925 was really carried out. The details would take me too far afield now, suffice it to say that due to an excessive use of unguents the king's mummy was found to have been solidly glued to the bottom of the third coffin and even the gold coffin itself was stuck to the bottom of the second coffin. Carter's team had to literally chisel the mummy away from the coffin to get at all the artifacts which now grace museums around the world. They severed the limbs, sawed the trunk away from the pelvis and decapitated the mummy at the seventh cervical vertebra. Mr. Filce Leek, a member of the expedition, produced a book afterwards under the title The Human Remains of Tutankhamen where he details the condition in which Harrison's team found the mummy of the king. Unless one has read the Antiquity paper and Leek's book in detail no worth-while opinion can be formulated about the meaning of the X-rays and a possible cause of death.

While the paper in Antiquity did not enter into speculations how Tutankhamen may have died, Harrison did write in the Buried History article:

"While examining X-ray pictures of Tutankhamen's skull I discovered a small piece of bone in the left side of the skull cavity. This could be part of ethmoid bone which had become dislodged from the top of the nose when an instrument was passed up the nose into the cranial cavity during the embalming process. On the other hand, the X-rays also suggest that the piece of bone is fused with the overlying skull and that this could be consistent with a depressed fracture which had healed. This could mean that Tutankhamen died from a brain hemorrhage caused by a blow to his skull from a blunt instrument.

This evidence taken together with the fact that the pharaoh was only 18 when he died, and considered against the troubled times during which he lived, poses an intriguing question: was Tutankhamen murdered?"

It was this sentence and one other sentence on the mentioned BBC documentary which started all the speculations about murder. Without any new evidence since 1969, Tut's death is now being declared not only a homicide but we even have the murderer according to the Discovery Channel.

Yet when one looks at what has been presented so far in regard to the interpretation of the crucial X-rays we have two different locations for the supposed "fracture" and "hemorrhage." One is in the posterior portion of the head, namely the occipital bone and the other higher up in the parietal bone. A scientifically inclined mind might ask: well which way is it? Let's give these X-rays to a panel of neuroradiologists and let them decide what the proper interpretation of the radiographs should be. Let us remember, also, that Harrison was Head of the Department of Anatomy at the University of Liverpool and although an excellent scientist he was not necessarily a specialist in neuroradiology.

The years went by, Martha and I had retired from our jobs, moved to Utah and I kept checking the literature intermittently whether or not new information had come out from Liverpool about the final interpretation of the X-rays. When this was not the case I asked, in December of 1995, my friend and colleague Dr. Ted Reynolds, Director of "The Institute of Epileptology" at the Maudsley Hospital in London, if he could find out who the current Chairman of the Anatomy Department at Liverpool University is because as time moves on people have a tendency to die. Lo and behold in April of 1996 I received a letter from Connolly. It was dated April 1, 1996 and stated:

"Your letter to Dr. Reynolds has been passed to Professor Chadwick, who passed it to Professor Wood who passed it to me. Reports of my death have (as the man said) been greatly exaggerated!

I enclose a positive and a negative print of the original lateral radiograph of the badly damaged head and neck of Tutankhamen.

I am afraid there is really nothing beyond our original publications on the subject which I can add about these radiographs. They have been examined recently by several eminent radiologists, and apart from the obvious features referred to in previous publications they really do not contribute anything particularly significant either to the procedures for mummification in the 18th Dynasty or, more importantly to the cause of death."

The letter ended with the request that in any publication credit should be given to the Department and that there is a standard University charge for publication in popular magazines or in non-academic books.

I thanked Connolly for his pictures and also mentioned that this view of the head has in the meantime already been published by Nicholas Reeves in The Complete Tutankhamen. In the text Reeves wrote, "Sadly Harrison did not live to publish fully his thoughts on this feature [the obvious bone splinter in the parietal area], and it is not clear whether he believed the damage to have been sustained before or after death, accidentally or intentionally. That the king was murdered, however, seems increasingly likely." How Reeves, who was a Curator in the British Museum's Department of Egyptian Antiquities, arrived at the likelihood of murder was not elaborated on.

Photographs in hand I proceeded to show them to my colleagues Dr. Richard Boyer, Head of the Department of Medical Imaging at Primary Children's Hospital (Salt Lake City's Pediatric Hospital for the University of Utah) where I still worked as a consultant, Dr. Anne Osborn a highly respected specialist in Neuroradiology at the University Hospital, and the Medical Examiner of the State of Utah, Dr. Todd Grey. This was done on separate occasions to obtain unbiased independent opinions. The verdict was unanimous: the splinter is in all probability due to post-mortem artifact, there is no evidence for a skull defect but unless one had the actual radiographs a final opinion could not be rendered merely on photographs. The visit to Dr. Grey was prompted by the desire to discuss my own ideas, on how the king might have died, with a forensic pathologist. In a subsequent letter, dated September 30, 1996, he confirmed that they were reasonable. The X-ray information was promptly relayed to Connolly with the request that he should continue to keep my interest in mind and let me know if and when something new developed.

Something did, but not in Liverpool. I had attended the American Clinical Neurophysiology Meeting in Boston and during a break in the proceedings wandered across the street to the Public Library. Everything was nicely computerized and not quite knowing what I would be most interested in I typed "Tutankhamen." Much to my surprise up came a brief article written by David Stout for the New York Times June 30, 1996. The headline was "The violent Death of King Tut." This was obviously the same as that of the 1969 London Times article except that irreverent American journalists are loath to use the kingís full name. The article stated:

"After studying the X-rays of Tutankhamen's skull, two scientists said last week that he might have been bludgeoned, and that his death at the tender age of 19, might have been slow.

The discovery was made when Bob Brier, an Egyptologist at the C. W. Post Campus of Long Island University, asked Dr. Gerald Irwin, a physician and trauma specialist at the university, to examine the X-rays of King Tut that were taken 28 years ago at the boy Pharaoh's tomb.

Dr Irwin said the X-rays showed that King Tut, who ruled Egypt more than 3,000 years ago, could have died of a blow to the head. And a line on the skull could indicate a blood clot, meaning Tut may not have died right away."

Immediately upon returning home a Fax went off to Connolly asking him whether or not Brier and Irwin had been members of the team of "eminent radiologists" whom he had mentioned in his previous letter. The answer was that this had not been the case. Brier and Irwin did not even have the X-rays. What Brier had done was to enlarge the same photograph Connolly had sent me previously, placed it on an X-ray viewing box, "made up to look like an actual radiograph - which it is not." To add emphasis not was underlined three times. Well, so much for the integrity of the New York Times but it was sad that one of our medical colleagues had allowed himself to be used in this spoof. Nevertheless a new wrinkle had appeared in this ongoing saga: What was the reason for assuming that Tut's death had not been sudden but that he had lingered for some time before succumbing to whatever had ailed him?

The answer was provided by a Father's Day present from my good and faithful wife in June 1998 in form of a book The Murder of Tutankhamen. A True Story by Bob Brier, Ph.D. The dust jacket tells us that Bob Brier is one of the country's most respected Egyptologists, whose specialty is paleopathology and that he has conducted autopsies on many ancient mummies. We are informed furthermore that "Now Egyptologist Bob Brier uses modern forensic techniques and ancient documents to reveal the crime, identify the killer of Tutankhamen, and bring the tumultuous world of ancient Egypt and its young pharaoh alive."

The historic information Brier provides can be found in other texts on the 18th Dynasty but what is new is an explanation for David Stout's article. Brier wrote:

"Given the omissions and confusions surrounding Tutankhamen's X rays, it was clear that a careful reexamination of the material relating to Tutankhamen's death was necessary. My first step was to get a copy of Harrison's X ray, but he had died in 1979. His colleague R. C. Connolly was still at the University of Liverpool and he kindly sent me prints of the X ray along with a friendly note that was far from encouraging.

'I am afraid there is really nothing beyond our original publications on the subject which I can add about these radiographs...Apart from the obvious features referred to in previous publications they really do not contribute anything particularly significant either to the procedures for mummification in the Eighteenths Dynasty or more important, to the cause of death.'"

Brier referenced the letter as having been sent on April 1, 1996. An attentive reader of this Hot Issues installment will immediately have experienced a profound déja vu sensation and this is the reason why I have presented Connolly's letter to me in full which had precisely the same date. What has happened here? Connolly is a busy man who has a heavy teaching load, in addition to his research efforts, and has little time to spare for numerous requests from all over the world about Tut's X-rays. So he apparently sent the same letter and photos to insistent petitioners. But Brier did something which is not quite kosher in scientific circles, especially when he subtitled his book "A True Story." He had replaced the statement about the "eminent radiologists" who had examined the pictures recently with ellipsis! The reason is obvious because what doesn't fit a hypothesis is not allowed to exist. If there is one message in all of this it is: Beware of Ellipsis! They can be used to hide the truth and whenever an ellipsis is encountered it behooves a scientist to go to the original text and find out what has been omitted.

But there is more. Figure 25 shows the by now famous photograph which is labeled as "X ray" and an arrow "points to the location of the possible blow to the back of the head." It is nowhere near the left ear as had been suggested by earlier authors and is so close to the neck that it would seem highly unlikely for an assassin to strike this spot which is extremely well protected by the neck musculature. Figure 26 shows the blowup of the photograph on the view-box Connolly had mentioned in his Fax. Brier can be seen pointing to the bone splinter in the parietal area (which is regarded as artifact), while Dr. Irwin watches attentively. The legend to the picture states that "Irwin was the first to suggest Tutankhamen may have lingered before dying from a blow to the back of the head."

Irwin's opinion was based on the BBC documentary of 1969 which I had not seen until after the interview for the recent Assassination video. In this documentary, which by the way is excellent, we are shown under what conditions the X-rays had been obtained by Harrison's team in 1968. On the film Harrison explained in detail the skull X-ray findings in regard to the splinter, which he regarded as artifact. But subsequently he added a fateful sentence when he described an "eggshell thinning" of the occipital bone, "This is within normal limits. But in fact, it could have been caused by a hemorrhage under the membranes overlying the brain in this region, and this could have been caused by a blow to the head, and this in turn could have been responsible for death."

Here is now the proverbial "smoking gun" for the cerebral hemorrhage or more properly called subdural hematoma, in neurologic circles. But Harrison was a scientist, as such cautious and not given to apodictic statements. The sentence is laced with "could." The only time a definitive "is" was used occurs in relation to the finding being "within normal limits." Now let us fast forward to 1998 and Brier's book where he wrote in regard to Dr. Irwin's opinion:

"First, I showed him the BBC video of Harrison's explanation of the X ray. Then he studied the X-ray print of Tutankhamen's skull. He agreed with Harrison. There could indeed have been a blow to the back of the head; the X ray was evidence [sic] for a hematoma; an accumulation of blood beneath the skin. But then Dr. Irwin noticed something else. Inside the skull, near the location of the possible blood clot, an area of increased density showed. This is what would be expected from a calcified membrane formed over a blood clot. Physicians call it a chronic subdural hematoma - a phenomenon that takes considerable time to develop."

Although Brier goes on to state correctly that the X ray "does not prove he was murdered," because X-rays can't reveal intentions, he had to justify the title of his book. He, therefore, continued:

"In Tutankhamen's case, two renowned experts saw evidence [sic] of a hematoma in the skull. Did Tutankhamen trip and hit his head? Given the location of the hematoma, that is unlikely. By itself, evidence of a fatal blow to the back of the skull in a place where an accident is unlikely would never convince a jury to convict. But it would certainly be enough to cause a thorough investigation by the police to see if they could turn up additional evidence. They would label the X ray 'indication of suspicious circumstances.'"

This is where the saga ended for the time being. Although the murder theory was not regarded as proven it was initiated by a set of X-rays which had never left Liverpool and had never been published in the medical literature so that the pros and cons of the various interpretations could have been discussed. Brier devotes the rest of the book to his literary detective work with the final conclusion that the assassin had been Ay. This would not have come as a great surprise to those Egyptologists who subscribed to the murder theory on the flimsy X-ray "evidence." I discussed this new "evidence" again with my radiology colleagues who regarded the idea of a calcified posterior fossa subdural hematoma as highly unlikely because they had never seen one in that location especially in a person of that age. Since my own efforts to get the actual X-rays had not been successful I dropped the matter and devoted myself to more attainable purposes.

But to paraphrase Shakespeare "uneasy rests the head that wore a crown." In August of 2001 a call came out of clear blue sky and a lady, who identified herself in a wonderful British accent as Kate Botting, asked me if she could talk to me in regard to Tutankhamen. She was making a video about Tutankhamen for Atlantic Productions to be shown on the Discovery Channel and would appreciate it if I could give her a few minutes to discuss the project. She was in town and could come to our house if this were agreeable. Obviously it was agreeable and over a couple of glasses of wine Martha and I discussed with Kate, and her camera crew supervisor Lance, all my efforts to find out what the X-rays really showed. I also told them that the evidence for young Tut having been murdered, as presented in Brier's book, is inadequate and pointed to various other more probable scenarios. She was enthused and asked if I would be willing to be interviewed for the film. I agreed but only on the condition that she bring along copies of the X-rays from Liverpool so that our experts could go over them and come to their own conclusions. She agreed and filming was set for September 15. But the whole world knows what happened on September 11. Air travel came to a standstill and the project had to be postponed.

After several delays Kate arrived on September 19 at 12:30 a.m. and by 8:30 a.m. I had finally at long last 3 X-rays in my hand. They consisted of the famed lateral view, a front to back view and one taken from the chin up. I headed immediately for what used to be called X-ray department of Primary Children's and now has the less descriptive but more flowery name of Medical Imaging. As usual Boyer was busy and there was no time for detailed inspection. I left the X-rays with him so that he could at least glance at them prior to the interview which was scheduled for the late afternoon of the same day.

Filming took place, most appropriately, in the morgue of the Medical Examiner's building. I was first in line and explained for about half an hour the reasons why the "evidence" for Tut's murder does not necessarily hold up and that a key element of Carter's findings may not have been properly interpreted in the past. Moisture had damaged not only the second coffin (the third one was pure gold) but even the bandages with which the body had been wrapped. Carter also reported that the closer to the body one came the worse the condition of the bandages and it seemed that the moisture had come from the body itself. Carter blamed this moisture on an excessive use of unguents for religious purposes and they had over the millennia introduced spontaneous combustion which accounted for the massively decayed state the mummy was found in. Inasmuch as the whole purpose of mummification was to preserve the deceased in as intact a state as possible, and the ancient embalmers had been experts in their art, I found it difficult to believe Carter's explanation. It seemed more likely to me that the body may have been already in the process of decay by the time it reached the "House of Vigor" or "Vitality," as the workshop of the embalmers was euphemistically referred to. Under these circumstances even experts may have been confronted with an impossible task. Desiccation with natron, the usual procedure, would have been no longer effective and a hasty disposal of the remains may have been imperative. Anyone who has had the unfortunate experience of viewing a decaying body knows that this process is accompanied by a terrible odor and I reasoned, therefore, that the clearly excessive use of unguents, by the bucketful, may have been to mask this dreadfully foul smell. I also suggested that there may well have been an accident during hunting or fishing in the desert or marshes sufficiently far away from the palace and even a few hours in the Egyptian sun can lead to the decay of a dead body. Another possibility could be related to the unexplained, and now no longer mentioned, nature of "the scab" on the left cheek which Derry had noted at the original autopsy. It might have been due to an insect bite which had become infected leading to sepsis which likewise hastens bodily decomposition and makes proper embalming difficult if not impossible. This is precisely what I had discussed with Todd Grey in 1996 and he had felt that these were reasonable ideas. I did not talk about the skull X-rays during the TV interview but left that to Dr. Boyer.

My comments were, however condensed in the movie to two brief snippets and since they clearly interfered with the murder idea they were treated with a curt statement, "But Cooper and King [the detectives] think it unlikely that Tutankhamen died in an accident, someone was always looking after him." On TV, just like in newspapers, the editor always has the last word and that is all the public ever gets.

The same mangling of the interviews occurred also especially in regard to Rich Boyer's skull X-ray explanations. He spent about twenty minutes explaining the various features which were all due to post-mortem artifact but he then became attracted to the seeming lack of intervertebral disc spaces. He interpreted this finding as suggestive of a congenital condition called Klippel Feil syndrome where the neck is fused and movement of the head thereby limited. This was precisely what the producers had been longing to hear because with a normal skull X-ray the murder theory loses much of its luster. When it was further said by Boyer as well as Grey, whose turn had come next, that even a relatively minor fall or blow to the head might, therefore, be fatal the murder story was again on track and a brand new piece of "evidence" could be added.

The detectives then took over. With the help of a "profiler" and by visiting the wall paintings of various tombs in Egypt the narrator told us that they were able "to right a wrong and nailed a killer." Ay had come upon the sleeping Tut, lifted his head by the stiff neck and then smashed it down. Murder solved!!!

When I saw this fantasy I cringed, but I had been forewarned. Connolly had sent me from England newspaper extracts which detailed the contents of the movie. Even our own Time magazine had a long article on "Who Killed Tut?" While my emotional tone was one of annoyance for having been misled in believing that the movie would be a documentary where the various possibilities of Tutankhamen's death would be discussed in a scientific manner, I can imagine how Egyptologists must have felt when they saw how previously published information was used by the producers to declare an old theory as a brand new fact. Since it was Bob Brier's book that apparently had been the inspiration for this video he may well have been particularly unhappy for not getting his name mentioned in the program. Although the content of the film was misleading my good Martha, who always finds a rose even among weeds, said: But the photography was good! That was correct and Lance deserves congratulations.

A few days after the filming Rich and I went over the X-rays in detail especially in regard to the supposed Klippel Feil syndrome. The impressive fusion of the cervical spine turned out to have likewise been a post-mortem artifact due to the resin. The neck was encased in a consolidated mass of resin which became apparent when we saw Harrison's original video-documentary, given to me by Kate. For this, as well as for bringing the X-rays from Liverpool I am grateful. The bone splinter in the skull which had given rise to the skull fracture theory is in all probability, as Connolly has pointed out to me, a piece of the first cervical vertebra which was dislodged when Derry stuck some instrument through what is called the foramen magnum on the bottom of the skull to explore the skull cavity. The "thinning" of the occipital bone is normal and exaggerated by the tilt of the head when the X-ray was taken, this applies also to the suspected "calcified membrane," which was taken by Brier as evidence that the pharaoh had not died suddenly. Thus the side view of the skull X-ray, which can be found in books around the world, is normal. Detailed explanations of the findings, which have been so puzzling, are now being prepared by us for a presentation to the medical community. So much for the "groundbreaking evidence" and the "motive for murder," the video tells the world about.

What can be learned from this adventure in science fiction? The first lesson is that persistence pays off even if it takes 15 years to see some X-rays. The second is that what you get afterwards may not be what you had expected, and the third that you cannot trust what you are being told on TV even from respected programs which masquerade under the name of History or Discovery. All the producers want is ratings which translate into money and that is what makes the world go round. By the way I was asked by a friend if they had paid me for my performance. Yes they did. I received $300. But Grey and I paid afterwards for dinner at an upscale French Restaurant where the entire party of about eight people was invited. Since Rich Boyer had to leave immediately after his interview he did not receive his $300. I, therefore, gave him half of my "honorarium," which he was loathe to take but I felt guilty and forced it on him anyway. He has a great many more children than I do, gets only a meager salary from the hospital, and he can use every penny he so richly deserves.

It is obvious that this saga is far from over. Tutankhamen's death will continue to give rise to further speculations and a new book which supposedly claims that he had hit his head against the throne during an epileptic seizure is to become available in November. It is, therefore, abundantly clear that the meager medical evidence has been distorted to such a degree that I might even write a book of my own. I would not only critically examine each one of the numerous theories that have been proposed and point out their shortcomings, but also discuss how and why the conclusions, which dot the literature, were arrived at. This aspect would actually be the most important one because the methods by which people are led to believe what they believe have general validity and clearly transcend the fate of Tutankhamen.
 
 
 
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