About Me

Just a short introduction on myself! My name is Corrie Inman and I'm a student at Montgomery College. I'm majoring in Graphic Design with a focus in digital tools. I love everything about creating, especially seeing the finished product.

Mummies

mummy1

Ancient Egyptians believed upon your death a person’s soul was split into several parts then continued to live on in the afterlife. The three well-known forms of the spirit were the ba, akh, and ka. The ba was the personality of the person and it was represented by a bird with the human head belonging to the person who died. The akh was represented by the Crested Ibis, a type of bird. When the person dies, the akh leaves the body and flies to the stars to spend eternity in heaven. And lastly, the ka was the life force, or soul, and looked exactly like the person. The ka lived in the tomb with their personal belongings and was meant to be used, if needed, in the afterlife, including food and drink. But in order for the ka to survive in the afterlife, their body had to be preserved in the way of mummification.

Who Gets Mummified

By all intents and purposes, everyone from all walks of life in ancient Egypt were mummified, but it was to a different extent depending on their social status. Preparing the body for the afterlife was a crucial part of death for every Egyptian. They believed life continued on after death on earth and mummification ensured that rite of passage.

Mummification Process

mummification

The process of mummification took 70 days to complete and included several embalmers to ensure proper mummification. The god of mummification, Anubis, was represented by the chief embalmer who was a priest and wore a mask of Anubis.

Step 1

The first step was to remove soft body parts that would cause decay. While it is known incisions were made on the body in order to remove the organs, the embalmers disliked this step immensely because they considered it disrespectful. Because of this, it was important for the other embalmers to curse and throw stones at the man making the incisions, not intending to hurt him, but as a symbolic part of the ceremony.


The stomach, intestines, liver, and lungs were preserved by drying them in salt called natron. It’s chemically similar to table salt and baking soda. Once thoroughly dried the organs were placed in canopic jars Canopic Jars and placed in the tomb with the body. Each jar had the heads of Horus’ four sons to protect the organs inside. What the Egyptians didn’t realize while removing the brain was its importance to the body as a whole. They would stir it up with a hook until it was liquefied and would run out of the nasal cavity freely. They honestly believed its’ sole purpose was to produce snot!


Once the organs were removed the body was washed with wine and rubbed with spices. These acted as an antiseptic and killed the bacteria left there. It was then covered in natron for 40 days to dry out. After the 40 days, the body was shrunken and wrinkled, then cleaned once more and rubbed with sacred oils to soften the skin. A wedjat, or bronze plate, with the Eye of Horus was placed on top of the embalming incision to heal the wound in the afterlife.


Step 3The body, having been dried and cleaned, was embellished with jewelry and covered in linen shrouds and strips. Small, magical amulets were placed in between layers of the linen strips to further protect the mummy. Each layer was coated with resin to hold the wrappings together and keep it water proof.

 

Once completed, the mummy was placed in a coffin, usually a very simple wooden box with minimal decoration. CoffinOf course, the more wealthy Egyptians were able to elaborate more and used anthropoids or mummiforms, which literally mean “human shaped.” MummiformThese coffins had faces which resembled the person inside and were heavily decorated. For added protection, some mummies were buried in a sarcophagus. These were very expensive and reserved only for pharaohs, queens, viziers, priests, and other important and wealthy Egyptians.

Burial Ceremonies

To follow the sun setting or “dying” in the west, the mummies were buried there as well. The embalmers would transport the mummy across the Nile River where it was picked up by mourners on the other side. It was placed on a boat-shaped sled where the funeral procession began its trip to the tomb. Along the way priests would recite spells and prayers from The Book of the Dead, while servants carried food and drink, shabtis, the canopic jars, and the mummy’s possessions.


Opening of the MouthOnce at the tomb, the ceremony called The Opening of the Mouth was performed by the priest in whom the priest would touch the mummy’s mouth with a special instrument and this would magically restore the mummy’s senses. Finally, the mummy was placed in the tomb along with all its possessions and the mourners would feast in the person’s name.

Some examples of what could be seen in a mummy's tomb:

Jewels Vessels

Doll & Dish Cosmetic Palette

About this Site

The Ancient Egyptians have always been of interest to me, especially their culture and the way they lived. I find it amazing that one of the biggest anomolies of history is still how they built the pyramids. The only thing I can say is that I feel lucky to live in a world where we can still see and experience their great works of art.