39 Facts About Zahi Hawass


Zahi Abass Hawass is an Egyptian archaeologist, Egyptologist, and former Minister of State for Antiquities Affairs, serving twice.

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Zahi Hawass has worked at archaeological sites in the Nile Delta, the Western Desert, and the Upper Nile Valley.

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Zahi Hawass was born in a small village near Damietta, Egypt.

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In 1979, Zahi Hawass earned a diploma in Egyptology from Cairo University.

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Zahi Hawass then worked at the Great Pyramids as an inspector—a combination of administrator and archaeologist.

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Zahi Hawass is often mistaken for being a Christian because of his name, even though he is a Muslim.

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From 1969 to 1975, Zahi Hawass was Inspector of Antiquities for a multitude of archaeological expeditions, for instance the Yale Expedition at Abydos, Egypt in 1969, and Abu Simbel between 1972 and 74.

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Zahi Hawass sporadically taught Egyptian archaeology, history and culture at universities in Egypt and the USA between 1988 and 2001, most notably at the American University in Cairo, the University of California, Los Angeles and Alexandria University.

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Zahi Hawass has described his efforts as trying to help institute a systematic program for the preservation and restoration of historical monuments, while training Egyptians to improve their expertise on methods of excavation, retrieval and preservation.

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Zahi Hawass was promoted to "Undersecretary of the State for the Giza Monuments" in 1998.

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Zahi Hawass continues to be involved in archaeological projects at Giza and other sites in Egypt.

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In 2002 Zahi Hawass was appointed as the Secretary General of the Supreme Council of Antiquities.

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When US President Barack Obama visited Cairo in June 2009, Zahi Hawass gave him personal tours of ancient Egyptian archaeological.

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Zahi Hawass later told The New York Times that thieves looking for gold broke 70 objects, including two sculptures of the pharaoh Tutankhamun, and took two skulls from a research lab, before being stopped as they left the museum.

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Egyptian state television reported that Zahi Hawass called upon Egyptians not to believe the “lies and fabrications” of the Al Jazeera and Al Arabiya satellite television channels.

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Zahi Hawass has since begun working as a lecturer in Egypt and all around the world, and promoting Egypt's tourism globally in cooperation with the country's Ministry of Tourism.

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Zahi Hawass writes weekly articles in various newspapers and magazines, and continues working as an archaeologist and consultant.

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Zahi Hawass's team is continuing to CT scan mummies, both royal and private, and hopes to solve some of the mysteries surrounding the lives and deaths of such important figures as Hatshepsut and Nefertiti.

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Zahi Hawass has written and co-written many books relating to Egyptology, including The Curse of the Pharaohs: My Adventures with Mummies, and King Tutankhamun: The Treasures from the Tomb, the latter published to coincide with a major exhibition in the UK.

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Zahi Hawass has written on Tutankhamun for the bi-monthly, UK-based magazine Ancient Egypt.

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Zahi Hawass is a regular columnist for Egypt Today magazine, and the online historical community Heritage Key.

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Zahi Hawass has narrated several videos on Egyptology, including a series on Tutankhamun.

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Zahi Hawass has appeared on television specials on channels such as the National Geographic Channel, the History Channel and the Discovery Channel.

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Zahi Hawass appeared on Unsolved Mysteries during a segment on the curse of Tutankhamun's tomb.

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In 2010, Zahi Hawass appeared on a reality-based television show on The History Channel called Chasing Mummies.

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Zahi Hawass worked alongside Egyptologist Otto Schaden during the opening of Tomb KV63 in February 2006 – the first intact tomb to be found in the Valley of the Kings since 1922.

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In June 2007 Zahi Hawass announced that he and a team of experts may have identified the mummy of Hatshepsut, in KV60, a small tomb in the Valley of the Kings.

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Zahi Hawass hosted and played further creative roles in the documentary Egypt's Ten Greatest Discoveries.

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Zahi Hawass has repeatedly spearheaded movements to return many prominent and irregularly taken Ancient Egyptian artifacts back to Egypt from collections in various other countries.

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In 2022, Zahi Hawass launched another petition, calling on the British Museum to return the Rosetta Stone, the bust of Nefertiti, and the Dendera Zodiac ceiling to Egypt.

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Zahi Hawass stated at the time that DNA analysis was out of the question because it would not lead to anything.

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In 2012, a study signed by Zahi Hawass disclosed that Ramses III may have had a haplogroup that is associated with the Bantu expansion and is the most dominant in Sub-Saharan Africa, E1b1a.

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Zahi Hawass has been accused of domineering behaviour, forbidding archaeologists to announce their own findings, and courting the media for his own gain after they were denied access to archaeological sites because, according to Zahi Hawass, they were too amateurish.

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Zahi Hawass has typically ignored or dismissed his critics, and when asked about it he indicated that what he does is for the sake of Egypt and the preservation of its antiquities.

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Zahi Hawass has been a long-standing opponent of normalised relations between Israel and Egypt.

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Zahi Hawass later wrote that he was using rhetoric to explain political fragmentation among the Arabs and that he does not believe in a "Jewish conspiracy to control the world".

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Zahi Hawass already sells a line of Stetson hats reproducing the ones he wears, which "very much resemble" the ones worn by Harrison Ford in the Indiana Jones movies.

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Zahi Hawass is the recipient of the Egyptian state award of the first degree for his work in the Sphinx restoration project.

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In 2003, Zahi Hawass was given international membership in the Russian Academy for Natural Sciences, and in 2006, he was chosen as one of the world's 100 most influential people by Time magazine.

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