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Tomb of Nebi DanielPhoto: the tomb of Nebiel Daniel mosque in Alexandria, Egypt, one of the alleged resting places of Alexander the Great. Picture courtesy of Susan Holmes.

Alexander was taken ill in Babylon, and died a few days later. His last few days are carefully documented. It took some days before he was finally declared dead and no one really knows what he died of. Was it poison, or just the endless campaigns catching up with him? If we found his body, which was mummified and hung around in Alexandria for a good 300 years, we might get a better idea. The tomb disappeared a long time ago.

Various people stole his burial gifts, including his nose, cloak, ring, breastplate and shield. The thieves were people like Augustus and Caligula. Even the solid gold sarcophagus got melted down for coinage and replaced with one of glass. The tomb disappeared some time in the 4th century A.D.?

In February 1995 the Greek archaeologist Liana Souvaltzis claimed to have found Alexander's tomb. Her 'new' tomb was located in the Siwa Oasis, Egypt, and not in Alexandria, where it had been visited many times in Antiquity. Should that surprise us? After all he was regarded as a God in many quarters. Perhaps his body was taken to Siwa to save it from the ravages of the dark ages. Anyway, Souvaltzis' discovery proved to be a hoax. So the location of the tomb remains a mystery. Will we ever know?

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