February 8, 1963
Dear Mrs. Fuhr:
I am sorry that my last letter caused you some worry. This Tuesday I was in Philadelphia and spoke to Miss Elizabeth Ralph, the head physicist of the Radiocarbon Laboratory of the University of Pennsylvania. I knew her from her published works only: she is a very pleasant person. I was previously reluctant to contact her directly, since the director of the Museum of the University (under whom she works
, Dr. Rainey, is unfavorable toward my theory.
Dr. Ralph is prepared to perform the carbon test on the mummy of Ramses III or on its wrappings. Of the wrappings she would need 20 grams, but of the mummy 50 grams, since the latter material has less carbon per gram. Probably in Cairo they would be sooner prepared to sacrifice some wrapping of this mummy than a piece of itself. But who knows?
Dr. Ralph is reading now my Ages and Earth. She knows Dr. Zaki Iskander Hanna (here they know him as Dr. Zaki Iskander); he spent some time in her laboratory during his stay in the States last year (he brought the Tuth-ankh-Amon exhibition). So if you see Dr. Iskander Hanna you may tell him that Dr. Ralph is rather eager to undertake this test (there is also a test-on the mortuary boats that he asked her to perform). You have had a mistaken impression that there is some difficulty or refusal to have one Museum send the samples to the other Museum; it was not yet asked.
I met Prof. Butrus Abd al Malik, who teaches in Princeton, and who is a friend of Dr. Zaki Iskander Hanna: and al Malik wrote the letter that I have mentioned to you in which he asked on behalf of a friend and for a test of an important problem in chronology that he should, if possible, give you either a piece of mummy or of the wrappings. But, of course, Hanna may send the samples by mail (airmail) and he knows also how to wrap them. It is important that there should be later no suspicion of contamination. Therefore, it is even better if Hanna mails the samples directly to Dr. Ralph: only it is necessary that he does not postpone to do it: later he may forget. Dr. Ralph also told me that in this case there would be no fee charged because she is interested in the results.
Actually this is a fundamental test not only for my work but even more so for the testing of the test. . .
Have together with your husband a very enjoyable time on your excursion to Egypt. I will be very careful in view of the Egyptian censorship; and probably there will be no occasion for me to write to you there. But should there be such occasion, I shall be very conscious of the situation.
Should Dr. Hanna (or Dr. Iskander, if this is his last name) be willing to give you from the mummy of one of the officials of Ramses III instead of the kings, we will have to accept. I do not know how Dr. Hanna stands toward my work, and whether he knows it. If he will demand to know the name of al-Maliks friend, you may tell him. . .
I am certain that the voyage will be very impressive to you because of your interest in the land and its monuments, in art and nature, in history, and the warm climate will do you and your husband good. Much luck to you.
Cordially, Immanuel Velikovsky