A comment to: “The manufacture and origin of the Tutankhamun meteoritic iron dagger” by Matsui et al.

Albert Jambon

MAPS, Version of Record online: 13 December 2022


“Matsui et al. (2022) performed X-ray fluorescence RF analyses of Tutankhamun’s dagger and its hilt. Although the approach is indeed interesting, this work has many shortcomings. The absence of reference to standard specimens impairs both absolute values and error estimates, especially in chemical mapping. A Widmanstätten pattern at a scale of 1 mm cannot be revealed by chemical mapping with a step of 0.9 mm and spots exceeding significantly the 1 mm size. The presence of Ca on the hilt is probably an artifact as it can be observed on the blade and other objects as well. Finally, since the hilt and the blade may not be from the same origin, we have no clue about the origin of the dagger blade.”