A tomb of a Queen that lived in Ancient Egypt may hold the key to understanding how its society came to decline and that can be applied to modern times.
Anthropologists have found new details about a previously unknown queen in Egypt. But beyond the historical insights offered by this find, there is a projection that could portend the end of time for society as we know it.
Professor Miroslav Barta and his exploration team found an ancient tomb that apparently belonged to Khentkaus III, a queen who lived at the time of Egypt’s Ancient Empire between 2649 and 2150 B.C. The finding was made in a necropolis in Abusir, southwest of Cairo.
The discovery of the tomb, which was buried 198 meters deep, was dubbed “a black patch in the history of the Ancient Empire” by Barta because it could show us the future of our own society.
Thanks to the hieroglyphs carved at the head of the tomb, Barta discovered that Khentkaus was actually a ‘Queen Mother’, wife of Pharaoh Neferefre (also known as Reneferef), who ruled some 4,500 years ago.
The details of the discovery are still unknown because the carbon tests and other laboratory analyses that shed light on the findings take years to complete. However, Barta is convinced that the tomb, and what lies within it, could give us clues to an era not unlike our own that faced disaster only to end in ruins.
What was found inside the tomb?
Apart from the skeletal remains of the Queen Mother, archaeologists discovered inside the tomb woodwork, pottery, copper, and animal bones.
For now, the only thing we know is the condition in which Khentkaus III died, however, we will have to wait until the experts finish the pertinent analyses that will tell them if she suffered some physical ailment and how many children she had. The reconstruction of the face will be “extremely difficult, if not impossible”, due to the deterioration of the skull probably caused by looters.
Barta and his team believe that the queen lived in a crucial period for Egypt’s ancient empire, as she began to confront fundamentally important factors such as the “rise of democracy, the terrible impact of nepotism, and the role that interest groups played,” they explain.
However, these were not the only points that began to deteriorate the state, as “climate change also played an important role, bringing to an end not only the Ancient Empire but those living in the Middle East and Western Europe at the time.”
“This contributed to the disintegration of the age of the pyramid builders,” Barta says. “Without reasonable floods, there were no reasonable harvests and therefore there were very bad taxes; without proper taxes, there were insufficient means to finance the state apparatus and maintain the ideology and integrity of the state.”
A projection of our present
Barta believes that the study of this tomb will yield a lot of information about the obstacles that the Egyptian empire faced at the time that led to its decline. But also, it could teach us a lot about what we live in today and perhaps, show us the path our society’s direction will take if we don’t take special care.
“You can find many paths into our modern world, which also faces many internal and external challenges,” Barta explains. “By studying the past you can learn a lot more about the present. We are no different from them. People always think ‘this era is different’ and ‘we are different.’ We’re not.”
The relentless global warming due to man’s refusal to abandon fossil fuels, which in turn is generating much more accelerated climate change than normal, not only has environmental implications. With the deterioration of optimal living conditions for the world’s population also comes the decline of economic systems and consequently weakened states. This is why Barta believes that this is not just a simple finding of a tomb, but a prediction that we could live in the near future.
Story originally published in Ecoosfera