12 Amazing Facts About the Valleys of Kings and Queens

Updated On: March 30, 2023

the Valleys of Kings and Queens

Many ancient Egyptian kings and queens were in the valleys of kings and queens for burial. They contributed significantly to the glory of ancient Egypt. Kings and queens were buried near their mortuary temples in magnificent tombs containing their most prised possessions. In the valleys of kings and queens, located in Egypt and also in The New Kingdom, pharaohs, queens and nobles had rock-cut tombs carved out for them.

 A valley now commonly referred to as King’s valley began in the 16th century B.C. and continued until the 11th century B.C. Ancient Egyptians were known for constructing enormous public monuments to honour their pharaohs. They invested much time and resources into constructing underground mausoleums hidden from view. The valleys of kings and queens are popular tourist destinations that can be found close to the western bank of the Nile; there is a city named Luxor. It is home to the most impressive collection of these elaborate tombs.

The Valleys are in the east-central part of Egypt between Karnak and Luxor. They are close to the location of ancient Thebes. The tomb of Tutankhamun is one of many belonging to pharaohs of the XVIII, XIX, and XX Dynasties that can be found in the valley of kings. During ancient times, the location was referred to by its official name. There lies the pharaoh, who for countless generations represented life and strength, and Health in the West of Thebes, in his excellent and magnificent cemetery.

As was stated earlier, to begin with, the Valleys are located just west of the Nile River. In Arabic, they are known as Wadi Al-Mulk W Al-Malikat. The formation of the modern-day valleys of kings and queens led to the ancient Egyptians making the construction of tombs an integral part of their preparations for the afterlife and their belief in the existence of an afterlife.

The ancient Egyptians had a firm faith in an afterlife, in which it was promised that their lives would continue after death and that pharaohs would be able to form alliances with the gods. This provided the ancient Egyptians with comfort in their belief in an afterlife. The valley of kings was an important burial site for Pharaohs. However, by approximately 1500 B.C., Pharaohs were no longer constructing enormous pyramids to be buried as they had in the past.

1. The valleys of kings and queens are located near Luxor.

On the western bank of the Nile is where you’ll find the enormous necropolis known as the Valley of the Queens. The location is just opposite the city of Luxor, home to the famous Luxor Temple complex and Karnak Temple. In ancient Egypt, this area was called “Ta-Set-Neferu”, which translates to “the place of beauty”. It is unknown exactly why this site was chosen to construct dozens of tombs. Still, it is thought to have to do with either its proximity to the working-class Deir El-Medina village or the fact that there is a sacred site nearby Cave dedicated to the entrance of Hathor.

2. Male pharaohs were buried in another nearby necropolis.

It’s possible that the fact that the necropolis of the male pharaohs is located here was another factor in the decision to use this location. This huge necropolis, with famous tombs like that of Tutankhamun, is widely recognised across the globe as being among the most significant archaeological sites.

3. There are a total of 110 graves in the valley of the queens.

The main valley makes up the Valley of the Queens and several sub-valleys. There are a total of 91 rock tombs in the main valley. There are a total of 19 tombs in the secondary cemetery built during the 18th dynasty.

4. The first tomb is under the name of Thutmose I.

The first tomb erected was that of Sekenenre Tao, who ruled during the 17th dynasty, and Princess Ahmose, daughter of Queen Sitjehuti. The tomb itself dates back to the period during which Thutmose I was the third ruler of Egypt in the 18th dynasty. The father of Thutmose’s queen, Hatshepsut, built one of the most impressive temples in ancient Egypt in the valleys of the kings and queens’ region.

5. Yeojae Valley was all 18 dynasties.

The first tomb was built in the Valley of the Maidens before the main wadi became a special burial site. The Valley of the Kings contains 19 graves, including:

  • Prince Amos Valley
  • The valley of the rope
  • Tropos Valley
  • Dolmen Valley

6. During the 19th Dynasty, only royal women were buried in the valley of the queens.

The fact that the Valley of the Queens was not exclusively used for the burial of queens in the past is undoubtedly one of the fascinating aspects of this area. It was also used as a burial place for other high-ranking women in ancient Egypt. It was in the 19th dynasty that they began to choose who could be buried where only the princess and the queen were.

7. A cemetery for anyone to use.

The widespread construction of tombs continued throughout the 19th dynasty of Ancient Egypt. One of the fascinating pieces of information regarding the Valley of the Queens is that the tomb’s construction was an ongoing process, and it is not known exactly who was buried. The time the queen or princess died was also when the tomb was allocated. Only then did the pictures and names of the queens hang on the wall. 

8. The most famous tomb is that of Queen Nefertari.

The tomb of Queen Nefertari (1290-1224 BC), one of the most well-known queens of ancient Egypt, was located in the Valley of the Queens. People thought it was Among the most aesthetically pleasing tombs in the region. She was one of the “great queens” of Ramses the Great, whose name literally means “beautiful consort”. Besides her beauty, she was very intelligent and could read and write hieroglyphs perfectly, which she used for diplomatic purposes.

depositphotos 365055362 stock photo entrance sign magnificent tomb queen

9. The ornate carvings of the tomb are well preserved.

The tomb of Queen Nefertari (QV66) is not only the most beautiful in the valley but also one of the best preserved. Some of the coloured terrains still look fresh. Considering it’s thousands of years old, that’s pretty amazing!

10. Wangbi Valley was frequently used until the 20th dynasty.

During the 20th dynasty (1189-1077 BC), several tombs were still being prepared, and in the alley, Ramesses III’s wives were buried. During this period, tombs were also prepared for the sons of the royal family. The last tomb erected was built at the end of the 12th century BC. during the reign of Ramses VI (location unknown), who ruled for eight years.

11. Many tombs may have been looted during the 20th dynasty.

Why did tomb mining suddenly stop in the 20th dynasty? During this period, a financial crisis took place, as evidenced by the strikes during the reign of Ramses III. These events culminated in the looting of many valuable tombs at the end of the 20th dynasty. After the 20th dynasty, Queen Valley was confiscated as a royal cemetery.

12. During the time of the Romans, it was also used as a cemetery.

Even though the Valley of the Queens is no longer used as a royal cemetery, this is arguably the most mind-blowing aspect of it. It is still widely used for other purposes. Many graves were reused as cemeteries for several people, and several new graves were excavated from the old ones. The tomb’s history begins with the Coptic period (3-7 A.D.) when the ancient Egyptian religion was replaced with Christianity. The Christian symbol of the 7th century was found in other graves, which means that the tomb in the Queens Valley has been used for more than 2000 years!

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