© unknownThe mummified face of King Tut's grandmother, Queen Tiye
Mummy experts have found a flat wart on the face of King Tut's grandmother, a phenomenon which they say is not very common in Egyptian mummies.

Located between the eyes, the small wart was detected by director of the Instituto de Estudios Cientificos en Momias in the Spanish city of Madrid, who spotted it during a visit to the Cairo Museum.

"I got a high-resolution image of the mummy's face from the Egyptian museum. From the enlargement, the small growth appears compatible with a flat wart or verruca plana," Mercedes Gonzalez told Discovery News.

The mummy was identified by DNA testing in 2010 as Queen Tiye, daughter of Yuya and Thuya, wife of Amenhotep III, and mother of Akhenaten.

The so-called Elder Lady has long reddish hair falling across her shoulders, the mummy belongs to one of the most beautiful women in the Egyptian history and the most influential woman of Amenhotep III's 38-year reign.

Statues show Tiye sitting by the king as an equal and appear to be loved by her husband who built a number of shrines for his queen, as well as a palace, a white sandstone temple in Nubia, land of her ancestors, and even an artificial lake named after her.

"It has been quite a surprise to find a flat wart between the eyes of such an Egyptian queen," Gonzalez said.

According to the head of the Swiss Mummy Project and Center for Evolutionary Medicine at the University of Zurich, the protuberance is intriguing.

"It could be a flat wart, but we can't tell for sure," said Frank Ruhli, adding, "Pure fibroma [a fibroid tumor] would be also possible."

Although experts are sure about the small growth on the Queen's forehead, Salima Ikram, professor of Egyptology at Cairo's American University is more cautious about labeling the growth or the mummy.

"I call her the possible Queen Tiye, as there is some debate as to the attribution. And I think that without further study one should not dismiss the idea that it was a mole that got flattened during mummification," she concluded.

Source: TE/HRF