Wednesday, March 23, 2011

mummification story

An important man has died and his body needs to be prepared for burial.

The process of mummification has two stages. First, the embalming of the body. Then, the wrapping and burial of the body.

Embalming the body

First, his body is taken to the tent known as 'ibu' or the 'place of purification'. There the embalmers wash his body with good-smelling palm wine and rinse it with water from the Nile.

One of the embalmer's men makes a cut in the left side of the body and removes many of the internal organs. It is important to remove these because they are the first part of the body to decompose.

The liver, lungs, stomach and intestines are washed and packed in natron which will dry them out. The heart is not taken out of the body because it is the centre of intelligence and feeling and the man will need it in the afterlife.

A long hook is used to smash the brain and pull it out through the nose.

The body is now covered and stuffed with natron which will dry it out. All of the fluids, and rags from the embalming process will be saved and buried along with the body.

After forty days the body is washed again with water from the Nile. Then it is covered with oils to help the skin stay elastic.

The body has been cleaned, dried and rubbed with good-smelling oils. Now it is ready to be wrapped in linen.

For more interesting topics related to archaeology, visit archaeology excavations.

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