Mummy - 910.26.1_1



Medium:Naturally mummified human body and plant fibre matting
Geography: Possibly Gebelein or Nagada, Egypt
Date: c. 3500-3100 BC
Period: Naqada II (Gerzean) Period, Predynastic Period
76.25 x 63.15 cm
Object number: 910.26.1
On view
Gallery Location:Galleries of Africa: Egypt

During the Predynastic Period, Egyptians were buried in shallow graves in desert areas; the dryness of the sand naturally preserved the bodies.  This burial was wrapped in a plant fibre mat which covered the body in a contracted position. Heads tended to be oriented south facing east toward the rising sun. This direction and the fetal body position may be early indications of the hope for rebirth in the Afterlife.  Earlier burials were in oval graves, while later rectangular graves were more common.

Though precise records are lacking, the body and the associated pottery carry the same museum accession numbers; it is reasonable to assume that they are part of an original group, but if not, this is still a typical grave assemblage.

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