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100 Years of King Tut ~ November, 1922 ~ as covered by National Geographic

Hello Collector's Corner members,

On this day 100 years ago, November 4, 1922:

Howard Carter "discovered" the entryway to the tomb of King (Pharaoh) Tutankhamun (aka 'the boy king'). Later, on November 23rd, with Lord Carnarvon (the financier of the expeditions) Carter arrived at the doorway and entered the then-still sealed inner burial chamber(s).

Tut was an instant legend and phenomenon. Further, Tutankhamun's parents were --ostensibly-- none other than Akhenaten and Nefertiti, two of the premier personalities in ancient Egyptology.

I have posted a photo album of images showing various books, magazines, documentaries, etc., that National Geographic has put out over the years.

Here ----->>

Note: Interestingly, there has never been a dedicated map/pictorial specifically about King Tut and/or his tomb(s) released by NGM as a stand-alone supplement. And yet, there has been a few versions of a "Tut" soundtrack, billed as 'sounds of the Pharaohs' and "ambient sounds of King Tut", which were commissioned to accompany several (Tutankhamun) exhibitions, circa 2005 + 2008. 

I have found that in the earliest coverage of King Tutankhamun, National Geographic spelled his name with an "e" at the end, but thenceforth presented it with the "u" we are accustomed to seeing in the modern era. 

Below, I will itemize a list of primary "King Tut" articles published in National Geographic Magazine (with or without Tut being on the cover of NGM).

  • May1923 - "At the Tomb of Tutankhamun" {the very 1st coverage in NGM, a mere 6 months after the discovery}
  •  October 1963 - "Tutankhamun's Golden Trove"  ~  {NGM's 75th anniversary issue}
  • June 2005 - "Modern Technology Reopens the Ancient Case of King Tut"
  • also, June 2005 - Department / 'Worldwide' - CT Scans of King Tut; new insights
  • January 2006 - Department / 'OnScreen & Online' - Join the Interactive Expedition to see King Tut's Burial Chamber
  • Dec 2007 - Department / 'Archaeology' - CT Scans of Egyptian Royal Mummies
  • September 2010 - "King Tut's Family Secrets"
  • November 2022 - a package of 5 articles commemorating the discovery's Centennial


Current comprehensive coverage of (links to) King Tutankhamun is ever-available on NGM's website, here ----> 

- - Scott S.


It should not be surprising, but that besides the above-itemized primary articles about King Tut, there are many numerous ancillary mentions of King Tutankhamun in NGM feature articles pertaining to other persons and topics over the decades.

Anyone interested in a full listing of references to The Boy King within NGM during 1925 - 2016, feel free to message me.  

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Here are all the covers of NGM which featured Tutankhamun, 1923 - 2022 :


MAY 1923 -

OCTOBER 1963 - 

MARCH 1977 - 

JUNE 2005 - 


NOVEMBER 2022 - 

If it may be of interest, they chose a different image (but similar design) for the Spanish edition:

Juan, thanks for showing us that, that's a nice image too. Of course as we all know by now, the non-English language NGM's are usually or mostly variant from the US/North American covers (even when the "cover story" is the same, different imagery and text).

Could you imagine a collector trying to collect ALL covers per month of NGM, worldwide? ha-ha now that'd be fun (and expensive!)

: - )

I know, that's why my English language collection stops in 1997 - right when the Spanish edition started. I just don't feel like buying the magazine in two different languages every month!

Anyway, I do buy a National Geographic in the local language whenever I travel to some place where it exists. Unfortunately some of them have been discontinued in the latest years - I managed to get a few numbers in Greek, Romanian, Russian, Persian or the Scandinavian languages before they disappeared, but they were no longer issued in Ukrainian or Azeri when I went there.

Today I crossed the border to Morocco for the first time since before Covid-19 (it remained closed for more than two years), and I couldn't stop myself from buying another number in Arabic even though I already have several. At first I thought that they had used the same image as the Spanish issue, but when I arrived home I noticed that the Spanish one displays the first coffin, while the Arabic one shows the third one:


I'd love to know precisely /why/ certain of the local-language editions have ceased. I had not yet heard tell of this. Interesting information you shared then. 

I like that (alternate) image on your Arabic NGM copy, below. 


I've translated this spreadsheet that I made with the date of launch (and withdrawal) of the international editions. Its source is Wikipedia, so it may not be so accurate!

I have no idea of the reason why some of them were discontinued. A few, like Azerbaijani, Mongolian or Ukrainian, lasted just a few months, so I guess that they were just not succesful, but others, like Turkish, Romanian or the Scandinavian languages, disappeared after twenty years or more. Maybe not so many people buy paper magazines anymore, what makes me fear about the future of our beloved NGM...



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