National Geographic : 1965 May
above the pale sands. Sunlight tipped a near by obelisk, and then dawn crept in among Karnak's columns like a gentle tide among giant pilings. By the time we clambered down, sunlight had filled the temple, and we ate our breakfast in the warmth of the new day. In the late morning, the Grosvenors and Ted went off in search of Karnak's famous stone carving of the sacred scarab of fertility. Legend maintains that all young married women who want children have only to run around the scarab seven times and shortly will find themselves expecting. When the three returned, Donna seemed a bit winded, and I asked what she'd been doing. "Running around the scarab," she replied, laughing. "Between Ted's taking movies and Gil's taking stills, I made about thirty round 612 trips. I'm sure of quadruplets, at least!" In the huge necropolis, the Valley of the Kings, we sometimes spent whole mornings descending hundreds of feet into tombs whose remoteness had failed to discourage thieves. The plundering of these tombs often began so soon after burial that they surely were "inside jobs." Tutankhamun's tomb is the only one at Luxor that archeologists have found largely intact. In 1922 its treasures were reported to the world.* The unbelievable wealth of gold and jewelry in the tomb of a teen-age Phar aoh gave some idea of the incredible riches stolen from tombs of older, greater kings. The Pharaoh's tombs were equipped with *See "At the Tomb of Tutankhamun," by Maynard Owen Williams, NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC, May, 1923.