“The Younger Lady” is the title given to the mother of King Tut whose mummified body was discovered in 1898 in the Valley of the King’s in Egypt in the tomb KV35 by archaeologist, Victor Loret.
The mummified corpse was found naked and damaged (due to tomb robbers) alongside two other bodies – one of which was later discovered to have been her mother, Queen Tiye and the other a young boy around the age of 10. The Younger Lady was found to be five foot, two inches (or 1.58 m) tall and had died between the ages of 25 and 35.
Interestingly, her body was found to have a large wound on the left side of her face, and CT scans and other investigations showed that the lethal wound took place prior to her death. A working hypothesis is that it was a result of an axe blow, but who ordered or delivered the blow remains a mystery. A potential stab wound was also located under her left breast. These injuries would cause substantial bleeding that could have led to her death.
Details on King Tut’s mum are sparse, but she would have given birth to Tutankhamun c. 1341 BC. We also know that she was married to her brother, Akhenaten, and is one of his lesser-known wives. The Younger Lady also had a double pierced ear and showed signs of suffering from scoliosis; the latter, according to researchers, may have only appeared after her death and the embalming process.
As there is a lack of records and no monuments to her, it is believed she died before her son ascended the throne in c. 1332.
Debates went on for years on who the mummy was, but a 2010 DNA test proved that she was King Tut’s mother. Her remains are now located in the Cairo Egyptian Museum.
The name of “The Younger Lady” has never been identified, but there has been speculation she was Queen Nefertiti or Queen Kiya. These have never been confirmed.
A 2018 episode of “Expedition Unknown” on the Travel Channel did a reconstruction of her face in full royal regalia, under the assumption that she was Nefertiti, which resulted in a backlash as the artist portrayed her as a white woman.