Arts & Culture

Ancient Egyptian Mummy Recipe Was Used 1500 Years Earlier

mm
Ancient Egyptian Mummy Recipe Was Used 1500 Years Earlier

Credit: University of York

A study published in the Journal of Archaeological Science on Wednesday revealed that the original ancient Egyptian embalming recipe used to preserve bodies was used 1500 years earlier than previously assumed.

A series of chemical tests done on a prehistoric (or predynastic) mummy in the Egyptian Museum in Turin, which dates back to 3700 – 3500 BC, showed that its embalming recipe is hugely similar to the embalming salve used to preserve King Tut’s body.

The recipe includes plant oil, heated conifer resin, an aromic plant extract and plant gum and sugar mix.

Dr Jana Jones, an expert on ancient Egyptian burial practices, noted that this is a ‘momentous contribution to our limited knowledge of the prehistoric period’.

Dr Stephen Buckley, an archaeologist from the University of York, added that this implies that “we have a sort of Pan-Egyptian identity well before the formation of the world’s nation state in 3,100 BC”.

For a long time, researches thought that prehistoric mummies were created by mere accident, yet this new evidence indicates that these ancient bodies were preserved for a purpose.

Dr Buckley and his team began the search years ago when he and his team extracted the chemicals from the textiles that have been used to wrap the mummies, which showed hints of an embalming resin that was found in later mummies.

However, the evidence was not enough, and so it took 10 more years to find and carry out the tests on the Turin mummy that remained untouched and unstudied by scientists to unlock the mystery.

“Until now, we’ve not had a prehistoric mummy that has demonstrated – so perfectly through the chemistry – the origins of what would become the iconic mummification that we all know about,” Dr Buckley said.

Egypt’s ancient culture is quite known for its mummification process. Most kings and queens were embalmed so that their bodies would be preserved for the afterlife, as per Egyptian belief.

Today, the Egyptian museums in Cairi’s Tahrir boasts a collection of royal mummies including the mummies of Hatshepsut, Ramses the Great and Sety I.

Sprinkling a Hint of African Flavor into the Egyptian Art Scene
Two Egyptian Films Screened at Melbourne International Film Festival


Subscribe to our newsletter


Arts & Culture
mm
@https://twitter.com/mirna_abdulaal

Mirna Abdulaal is a writer, researcher and aspiring public/political communication specialist interested in women's rights, cultural heritage and fashion, and political communication.

More in Arts & Culture

Remembering the Lasting Legacy of Egyptian Singer and Actor Talaat Zein

Farah Rafik6 December 2022

In Photos: The Dior Show Brought a Night of Fashion and Culture at the Pyramids

Farah Rafik5 December 2022

Festivals Associated with the Journey of the Holy Family Now UNESCO Heritage

Mona Abdou1 December 2022

Through the Decades: The Evolution of Egyptian Film Title Designs

Farah Rafik30 November 2022

An Artist for Egyptian Women: On the Authentic Warmth of Zeinab Al Sageny’s Art

Farah Rafik29 November 2022

Beloved ‘Tintin’ Features in Temporary Photo Exhibition at NMEC

Sara Ahmed28 November 2022

Arab Actors Shine in Fifth Season of Netflix’s ‘The Crown’: Review

Farah Rafik28 November 2022

Arab Anthems: Music as a Powerful Tool in Cinema

Farah Rafik23 November 2022