Haward Carter and His House at Thebes

Haward Carter and His House at Thebes

Luxor

The British archaeologist Howard Carter designed and built this mudbrick house in 1910. It was his home when he, his patron Lord Carnarvon, and their Egyptian and international collaborators discovered the tomb of Tutankhamun in 1922. Conveniently sited for his excavations in the Theban necropolis and the Valley of the Kings, this remained Carter’s Luxor base until his death in 1939. The chosen location was known locally as Ulwit al-Dibban (Hill of the Flies).

The house was built around a domed central hall and contained two bedrooms, work spaces, a photographic darkroom, and servant quarters. During Carter’s lifetime the house had no running water, electricity, telephone, or garden. Carter furnished it plainly with locally made furniture, his own artworks, and a small collection of antiquities; sadly few photographs or descriptions of the interior survive.

Carter bequeathed his house to the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, in recognition of the help the museum had given him with the excavation of the tomb of Tutankhamun. The house passed to the Egyptian Service des Antiquités, who subsequently added an extension to the west and used the building as accommodation for antiquities inspectors and archaeologists.

Carter House was converted into a museum in 2009. A replica of the tomb of Tutankhamun, made and donated by Factum Arte, was installed in the grounds in 2014. The house and gardens were restored in 2022 for the centenary of Carter’s great discovery.

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