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 Lord Carnarvon

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Lord Carnarvon

Born George Edward Stanhope Molyneux Herbert, in London, the son of Henry Howard Herbert, 4th Earl of Carnarvon and Lady Evelyn Stanhope. He was styled Lord Porchester until inheriting the title of 5th Earl of Carnarvon at his father's death in 1890. He married Almina Victoria Maria Alexandra Wombwell in 1895 and with her had two children. He was a sponsor of horse races, and an early advocate of automobile racing. An motor accident in 1901 severely damaged his health, and it was recommended he winter abroad. He visited Egypt for the first time in 1903. He developed an interest in Egyptology during his stay, and his initial foray into excavation convinced him to rely on more experienced diggers. He threw his patronage behind the Egyptologist, Howard Carter. In their first season together, Carter discovered the decorated tomb of Tetiky, an early 18th Dynasty mayor of Thebes, and another tomb containing wooden tablets inscribed with the precepts of Ptahhotep, a series of instructions for moral guidance, and the text on the expulsion of the Hyksos by a 17th Dynasty pharaoh. Their success led to an expanded concession, and subsequent seasons led to the discovery a series of important private tombs dating from the end of the Middle Kingdom to the beginning of the New Kingdom, and temples built by Hatshepsut and Ramses IV, as well as the tomb believed to have been prepared for the pharaoh Amenhotep I and his mother, Ahmose-Nofretiri. Their goal, however, was to obtain a concession to dig in the Valley of the Kings. In 1915, the holder of the Valley of the Kings concession abandoned it, believing the Valley exhausted. Carnarvon snapped it up, and set Carter to work in Amenhotep III's tomb. Between 1917 and 1921, Carter focused his energies, and Carnarvon's finances, on finding the elusive tomb of Tutankhamen. After fruitless seasons, however, Carnarvon's enthusiasm waned. After an impassioned plea from Carter, Carnarvon gave the concession only one more season to pay off. On November 4, 1922, three days after starting the season, Carter discovered the top of a sunken staircase. Carnarvon was summoned from England and was present two weeks later when the shaft was fully excavated, and proved to be the entry to Tutankhamen's tomb. The treasure trove that was Tutankhamen's tomb was astonishing, as yet unsurpassed in the history of Egyptian archaeology. Following the official opening of the tomb, Lord Carnarvon departed for Aswan in February for a few days rest. An insect bite on his face became infected, and he became ill, probably with erysipelas. The illness was debilitating enough to confine him to bed rest. Arrangements were made for him to be moved to the Continental-Savoy Hotel in Cairo. He developed pneumonia, however, and on the morning of April 5, he died. He body was removed to Britain, and laid to rest in a tomb in an ancient hill fort overlooking his family seat.

Bio by: Iola


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  • Maintained by: Find A Grave
  • Originally Created by: Peterborough "K"
  • Added: 9 Nov 2004
  • Find A Grave Memorial 9785543
  • Find A Grave, database and images (https://www.findagrave.com : accessed ), memorial page for Lord Carnarvon (26 Jun 1866–5 Apr 1923), Find A Grave Memorial no. 9785543, citing Beacon Hill (Private Plot), Highclere, Basingtoke and Deane Borough, Hampshire, England ; Maintained by Find A Grave .