The mystery over the mummified legs, however, is not completely solved. The authors admit the identification can't be done with absolute certainty as some analysis failed. Moreover, QV66 is not an original undisturbed burial situation.
DNA testing was inconclusive since the samples turned to be contaminated and not suitable for analysis, while radiocarbon dating of the remains yielded odd results - the remains would predate the assumed lifespan of Queen Nefertari's by some 200 years.
"A discrepancy between radiocarbon dating and Egyptian chronology models has long been debated. Indeed, some question on the chronological model of the New Kingdom may now arise," Habicht said.
"For the future, we strongly suggest radiocarbon dating of other royal and non-royal remains of the Ramesside era, in order to validate or disprove the chronology," he added.
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Nefertari's tomb also contained a pair of sandals made of vegetal material - grass, palm leaf and papyrus - in a style typical of the 18th-19th Dynasties.
According to the researchers, the fine quality and shape of the sandals suggest they were royal footwear.
They estimated the shoe size to be 39-40 (US size 9), fit an individual of Nefertari's stature.
André Veldmeijer, visiting research scholar at the American University in Cairo, agrees on the sandal' size.
"The area of the foot, if the sandal would fit neatly, would reach slightly beyond the front strap, say about 24-25 cm (9.4-9.5 inches) This would indeed result in size somewhere 39 to 40," Veldmeijer, an authority on ancient footwear, told Seeker.
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He noted, however, that is not certain the sandals would fit exactly.
"For example, the footwear from King Tut's tomb fall in two sizes without intermediate size. So, it seems that footwear was not really made to fit," Veldmeijer said.
Rühli and colleagues examined the possibility that remains from a burial of the 17th or 18th Dynasty were washed in the tomb after it was open. However, tomb QV66 is on higher ground at the side of the Valley of the Queens, while the burials from the 17th and 18th Dynasty are mostly at the bottom of the valley.
"Mudslide and heavy rains would have washed remains out of the valley but unlikely upwards and towards the end of the valley," the researchers noted.
"The most likely scenario is that the mummified knees truly belong to Queen Nefertari. We have the fact that the remains were found in her tomb, together with objects naming her alone and no one else," Habicht said.