Museum of Egyptian Antiquities, known
commonly as the Egyptian Museum, in Cairo,
Egypt, is home to the most extensive collection
of pharaonic antiquities in the world.
It has 136,000 items on display, with
many more hundreds of thousands in its
basement storerooms. The museum is an
outgrowth of the Egyptian Antiquities
Service, established by the Egyptian government
in 1835, in an attempt to limit the looting
of antiquities sites and artefacts. Its
museum opened in 1858 with a collection
assembled by Auguste Mariette, the French
archaeologist retained by Isma'il Pasha.
After residing in an annex of the palace
of Ismail Pasha in Giza from 1880, the
museum moved to its present location,
a neoclassical structure on Tahrir Square
in Cairo's city centre, in 1900. The highlight
of the collection is often considered
to be the tomb artefacts of the Pharaoh
Tutankhamun, whose almost intact tomb
Howard Carter found in the Valley of the
Kings in 1923.