The curse of the pharaohs was finally given a scientific explanation Saturday.
Did you know a slew of archaeologists and explorers have met untimely deaths within days, weeks, months and even years after disturbing the mummified remains held within ancient sarcophagi? Known as the “Curse of the Pharaohs,” this chilling, mysterious reality may finally have a scientific explanation.
No one is safe from the curse. Along with researchers, even thieves have fallen to illness, bad luck or death after bothering the dead. But the former Minister of State for Antiquities of Egypt, Zahi Hawass, told The U.S. Sun the mystical curse is actually a fairly obvious — yet deadly — issue.
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“When you have a mummy inside a tomb, this mummy has germs that you cannot see,” Hawass told the outlet. “Archaeologists in the past, they were in a hurry and they entered inside the tombs and they were hit by germs and they died.” (RELATED: Mysterious Mummy Reveals Lost City Never Found On Any Maps)
Hawass used the example of King Tutankhamun, whose tomb was opened and remains discovered in November 1922. Almost everyone who was there when the tomb was opened, and even those who visited later, were dead within just a few months, according to the Sun. The financial backer of the excavation, Lord Carnarvon, died in April 1923. Howard Carter, who famously opened King Tut’s tomb, died in February 1923.
The solution to avoiding the same fate? Don’t hang around in a closed space or get your face too close to the dead. Hawass recommends waiting at least 30 minutes after discovering and opening a sarcophagus or tomb to see what’s inside.
So, just remember that the next time you come across a mummy, okay?