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Cautionary Tales – The Mummy’s Curse (Basic)

100 years in the past, on sixteenth February 1923, the Tomb of the Pharaoh Tutenkhamun was formally opened. Disturbing the stays of the Egyptian pharaohs is understood to incur a lethal curse, so why did a group of archeologists nonetheless threat inciting the wrath of King Tutankhamun by getting into his burial chamber? And what number of of them met a untimely finish for his or her impudence?

Cautionary Tales is written by me, Tim Harford, with Andrew Wright. This traditional episode was produced by Ryan Dilley and Marilyn Rust and was first launched in November 2021.

The sound design and authentic music is the work of Pascal Wyse. Julia Barton edited the scripts.

Because of the group at Pushkin Industries, together with Mia Lobel, Jacob Weisberg, Heather Fain, Alice Fiennes, Jon Schnaars, Carly Migliori, Eric Sandler, Emily Rostek, Daniella Lakhan and Maya Koenig.

When you have questions for our Listener Q&A episodes please ship them to Or, you may go away a voice observe at 914- 984 – 7650 (US quantity, so worldwide charges could apply). Please bear in mind that we could use your query on the present.

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Additional studying and listening

Roger Luckhurst’s ebook, The Mummy’s Curse , is the right information to each angle of the story. Nigel Blundell’s The World’s Biggest Errors offers a vivid tabloid-style model, and Snopes described after which fact-checked the story of the Unfortunate Mummy. Skeptoid covers and debunks numerous explanations for the curse.

The Mesmeromania incident is roofed intimately by Christopher Turner for Cupboard Journal. Shankar Vedantam and Invoice Mesler set it in wider context of their fascinating ebook Helpful Delusions.

Charle’s Duhigg’s story about Goal and the pregnant teenager is within the New York Instances Journal.

Tutorial research on placebos, nocebos, and the BMJ article in regards to the mummy’s curse:

Howick, J. Unethical knowledgeable consent attributable to overlooking poorly measured nocebo results. Journal of Medical Ethics.

Colloca L, Miller FG. The nocebo impact and its relevance for medical apply. Psychosom Med. 2011;73(7):598-603. doi:10.1097/PSY.0b013e3182294a50

Nelson MR. The mum’s curse: historic cohort research. BMJ. 2002 Dec 21;325(7378):1482-4. doi: 10.1136/bmj.325.7378.1482. PMID: 12493675; PMCID: PMC139048.



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