Eight sticks of King Tutankhamun's collection have been transferred to Egypt's restoration department at the planned Grand Egyptian Museum (GEM), overlooking the Giza Plateau, in a first step towards restoring and relocating all of the boy king's treasured collection from the Egyptian Museum in Cairo.
Tutankhamun's treasured collection will be among the Grand Egyptian Museum's permanent display, due to open in 2015, along with the valued collection of King Khufu's mother Hetep Heres, Khufu's twin solar boats and the jewellery collection, to mention a few, according to the GEM exhibition organisers.
Director General of the GEM Hussein Abdel Bassir told the Ahram Online that the transferred artefacts included eight wooden sticks out of the 132 of Tutankhamun's original collection.
The sticks came to the Grand Egyptian Museum only for restoration and will return back to its original location at the Egyptian Museum in Cairo after the work is done, Abdel Bassir said.
The whole Tutankhamun collection as well as other compilations will be transferred and put on display at its new location once the construction work at the Grand Egyptian Museum is finished.
Abdel Bassir pointed out that the sticks are carved in wood gilded with gold and its tops are decorated with heads embellished with coloured precious stones. All the sticks bear Tutankhamun's cartouche. These sticks were used by the king in his daily life activities as well as in rituals and religious ceremonies.
Tutankhamun's collection is the most complete royal treasure ever found, consisting of more than 3,850 artefacts. The most spectacular of them are the king's gold mask embellished with precious stones and the three-mummy shaped coffins; one made of pure gold and the two others of gilded wood.
This collection was kept intact in Egypt to show how royal tombs were provisioned. The assortment includes everyday artefacts, such as toys and games, chairs, stools and beds, wine jars and boxes of food, bows, arrows, swords, and boomerangs as well as guardian statues, ritual statues of deities, and magical objects to protect and assist the king in the afterlife.
The Tutankhamun collection shows how kings practiced their personal life, especially for the mysterious boy king. It shows his love of hunting, his happy marriage to his wife, Ankhesenamun, and his relations with high officials who provided him with inscribed shabtis (statuettes) intended to perform work in place of the deceased in the underworld.