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Egypt restores King Tut's priceless golden coffin

Rachel Tesler

For the first time ever, Egypt has begun restoration on the gold-covered coffin of infamous boy-pharaoh, Tutankhamun.

The country’s antiquities minister announced Sunday that the exhibit would be on display as part of the new Egyptian museum, scheduled to open next year. The new Grand Egyptian Museum is being built near the pyramids of Giza outside Cairo.

The sarcophagus of King Tut is constructed of wood and gilded with gold. The restoration is expected to take at least eight months.

According to the Associated Press, Minister Khaled el-Anany told reporters the extended restoration is due to the extreme fragility of the coffin. It has remained untouched since 1922, when British archaeologist Howard Carter and Lord Carnarvon discovered the 3,000-year-old tomb in the Valley of the Kings.

The king's mummified body was found buried with his worldly precious goods, in his golden coffin.

Tutankhamun ruled Egypt for approximately 10 years and was around 19 years old when he died. Experts suspect he died due to gangrene, likely caused by a broken leg.

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While buried in the smallest tomb in the Valley of the Kings, King Tut also had the most expensive. According to History Extra and the BBC, the innermost coffin was made from thick sheets of beaten gold, while surrounded by wood and would be well over $1.2 million.

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