Kw-logo-smaller

Egypt - Dissecting Mummies

Mummies, like this one, were put in sand pits, not tombs.
Mummy
Mummies organs were put in these!
Canopic Jars

When you hear about a Mummy do you think about some stiff-legged, skeleton wrapped in loose cloth trying to seek revenge? Or maybe you think of young King Tut laid out in his golden tomb. Whatever the case, these shriveled, icky looking bodies go back a long way.

What is a Mummy?

A mummy is a very old, dead body. It's not a skeleton or a fossil cuz some soft tissue (skin, organs and muscles) is still stuck on the bones. This mummification can happen on purpose or by accident. Some of the world's best-known mummies were accidentally created when a body was put in a place where no air or moisture could get to it. Lack of air and moisture delays the decaying process and mummifies the body. Bodies can be dried in the sun, with fire or smoke, or by freezing it.

Master Mummy Makers

Egyptians weren't the first or the last to create mummies but they were probably the best known for them. This might have more to do with their very hot climate than their skill. Desert winds and scorching hot sand would quickly dry out a dead body. In fact, one of the oldest Egyptian mummies (from about 3500 B.C). might have been created this way. Back then, if you wanted your body mummified by the pros it would have cost an arm and a leg, or your weight in gold.

How to Make a Mummy - Step One

It takes 70 days to make a well preserved mummy. First, internal parts of the body have to be removed. Take a special hooked tool - it looks like a crochet needle - and carefully put it up the nose and scoop out brain tissue. Then make a cut on the left side of the stomach and remove stomach and chest organs. The heart stays where it is but the stomach, liver, lungs and intestines are put in special boxes or jars, known as canopic jars. These jars go in the tomb with the body.

How to Make a Mummy - Step Two

Next, all the moisture must be taken out of the body. Cover the body with natron, a salt that works great for this process, and put natron packets inside the body. When the body is dried out completely, remove all the natron. The body will look like a blackened dried out human. Fill sunken parts of the body with linen and add false eyes.

How to Make a Mummy - Step Three

Now it's time to wrap the body. You'll need about 150 yards of linen - the length of one and a half football fields. Use long strips of the linen to carefully wrap the body. This might take up to 15 days. Fingers and toes can be wrapped individually, but they don't have to be. In between layers put warm sticky stuff like pitch or tree sap on the linen. You might also want to add good luck charms and jewelry. When this is done, the mummy is complete.

The Afterlife

Egyptians believed that mummifying a person's body after he or she died was an important part of a person's safe passage to the afterlife. The tomb was also prepared for this journey. Furniture, food, wall paintings, statues and, of course, jewelry were buried with the body. A mask was put over the face so the soul would recognize the body when it returned to Earth. Between the fourth and seventh century A.D. many Egyptians became Christians so they stopped making mummies. During the 3000 year mummy-making period it is thought that more than 70 million mummies were made in Egypt. Thanks to vandals, grave robbers and treasure hunters, most of them will never be found.

Related Stories:
>
>

readers voted!

Comments

Shadeleaf

Shadeleaf wrote:

Cool but who wants to do one now? Do the old tradition with pets.
commented: Sun Jan 05, 2014

marby

marby wrote:

wow cool
commented: Sat Aug 31, 2013

lovergurl1211

lovergurl1211 wrote:

i hate mummys O.O
commented: Mon Apr 08, 2013

there are 22 more comments

Please login or register to add comments

share with your friends


Twitter Facebook Myspace Digg


like this article?
Sign up now to get more just like!

latest videos

F992307477265

If You Were a Mummy, Why Would You Come Back?

  • For love.
  • For revenge.
  • To bring more clothes to the afterlife.
  • To scare people.

related stories

Micro_king tut_micro
Many mysteries surround King Tut-Ankh-Amen and his short reign as Egyptian pharaoh. Was he really...
Ancient Egyptians came up with the first form of the alphabet. They used more than 2,000 common o...
Egypt has a 3000 year-old history. That's a long list of pharaohs. Read about some of the more in...

Random in the forums

shae508
shae508 posted in Say Anything:
"Thunderpandapaw" wrote:Me!! Hey! how are ya?
reply 27 minutes
wildanimal79
wildanimal79 posted in Food:
yea i eat in any kind of weather even in a tornado 
reply 29 minutes
Kasey112
Kasey112 posted in Say Anything:
Anyone on I am on
reply 30 minutes
donteatcarrots
One cannot simply judge another rights based on their gender. Y'know never know, some women can be stronger than the typical man. I just scrolled through the recent posts, and as Teh_Skittlez mentioned, (using the example of the construction worker) that if a woman can lift as much as the average man, I see no problem with that. This applies to other careers as well. 0-0 My main point is to keep the society equal- not snap out your opinion the minute you realise that person's gender. As many people have mentioned, equality for everyone. :D
reply 42 minutes
Cataclysm_Destruct
Send children to school! THE ONLY THING THEY WILL LEARN IN A CASINO IS HOW TO LOSE MONEY
reply 43 minutes

play online games

Candy-100

A great online version of the famous Candy Crush. This is the best game launched...

1515_gl_kidzworld_100x100_jpg_fz

Intriguing planets, weird and wonderful characters; challenge friends and find a...

157262_(2)

When you go back to Candyland, you’ll wonder why you ever left in the first plac...

100x100_ra_logo_girl

Uncle George has left you his farm, but unfortunately it’s in pretty bad shape. ...

_thumb_100x100

Shoot blobs with different properies to merge yellow blobs. Your blobs can be re...