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The Younger Lady

Frontal view of the Younger Lady (Smith 1912).

Dynasty 18th Dynasty
Pharaoh(s) Amenhotep III
Smenkhkare (?)
Titles King's Daughter
Father Amenhotep III
Mother Tiye
Spouse(s) KV55 Mummy
Issue Tutankhamun
Burial KV55, later KV35
(both re-burials)

The Younger Lady is the informal name given to a mummy discovered within the KV35 rock-cut tomb of Amenhotep II in the Valley of the Kings by archaeologist Victor Loret in 1898.[1] The mummy also has been given the designation KV35YL ("YL" for "Younger Lady") and CG 61072, and currently resides in the Egyptian Museum in Cairo. Through recent DNA tests, this mummy has been identified as the mother of Pharaoh Tutankhamun and a daughter of Pharaoh Amenhotep III and his King's Great Wife Tiye. Early speculation that this mummy was the remains of Nefertiti was argued to be incorrect,[2] as nowhere is Nefertiti accorded the title "King's Daughter".[3]



The mummy was found adjacent to two other mummies in KV35: a young boy who died at the approximate age of ten and is thought to be Prince Webensenu, and an older woman, who has been identified as Tiye by the recent DNA studies on Tutankhamun's lineage.[2] The three mummies were found together in a small antechamber of the tomb of Amenhotep II, lying naked, side-by-side, and unidentified. All three mummies had been extensively damaged by ancient tomb robbers.



The titles held by the Younger Lady depend on the accepted identification. Given her established parentage,[2] she certainly held the title King's Daughter (zꜣt-nswt) during her lifetime. Whether she also held the title King's Wife (ḥmt-nswt) is less certain. It is unknown whether she ever received the title King's Mother (mwt-nswt); if she did, it must have been given to her posthumously by Tutankhamun.

Description of the mummy[]

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Facial reconstruction[]


On 7 February 2018, The Younger Lady was featured on the seventh episode of the fifth season of Expedition Unknown, entitled "Great Women of Ancient Egypt". On the presumption that the mummy might be Nefertiti, a team led by Expedition Unknown's host Josh Gates used the preserved remains, modern technology, and artistry to present a reconstruction of what the Younger Lady would have looked like in full royal regalia.[4] The bust was created by French paleoartist Élisabeth Daynès. As stated above however, the DNA research on the mummy excludes Nefertiti from consideration as the Younger Lady.[2]


A 1912 sketch made by Grafton Elliot Smith of the full body of the Younger Lady mummy, documenting the extensive damage.


  1. Reeves & Wilkinson 1996, p. 100.
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 2.5 2.6 2.7 Hawass et al. 2010.
  3. "Ray Johnson on the Forensic Reconstruction of the "Younger Lady" The Oriental Institute of the University of Chicago". Retrieved 10 May 2021.
  4. "Photos: New 3D reconstruction of Queen Nefertiti stirs controversy". Egypt Independent. Retrieved 18 January 2022.


  • Hawass, Z./Gad, Y.Z./Somaia, I./Khairat, R./Fathalla, D./Hasan, N./Ahmed, A./Elleithy, H./Ball, M./Gaballah, F./Wasef, S./Fateen, M./Amer, H./Gostner, P./Selim, A./Zink, A./Pusch, C.M., 2010: Ancestry and Pathology in King Tutankhamun's Family. Journal of the American Medical Association. Chicago, Illinois: American Medical Association. 303 (7), p. 638–647.
  • Reeves, N./Wilkinson, R.H., 1996: The Complete Valley of the Kings: Tombs and Treasures of Egypt's Greatest Pharaohs. Thames & Hudson (2010 paperback edition), London.
  • Smith, G.E., 1912: The Royal Mummies. Duckworth (reprinted year 2000 edition), Bath.

External links[]