Egyptian mummification

Mummification — the process necessary to preserve the body of a person or animal. This can be a spontaneous process, or it may be intentional. Egyptian mummies were made by drying. Egyptians dried body, using a salt mixture called 'sodium oxide. " This 'natron' — a natural substance, which is common on the river Nile. 'Natron' consists of four salts: sodium carbonate, sodium hydrogen carbonate, sodium chloride, and sodium sulfate. Sodium carbonate acts as a drying agent, 'pull' water from the body. At the same time, the bicarbonate in the presence of moisture increases the pH, which creates a hostile environment for bacteria. Egyptian climate provided a lot of favorable conditions, the process of mummification.

The Egyptians believed that there were six important aspects that make the person: the physical body, shadow, name, ka (spirit), ba (personality), and the akh (immortality). Each of these elements played an important role in the formation of the individual. Everyone was required to achieve rebirth in the afterlife.

Except for the akh, all these elements are attached to a person at birth. Shadow of a man was always with him. The man could not exist without a shadow, like a shadow without the person. The shadow was represented as a small man, painted completely black.

Person's name was given to him at birth and will exist until it spoken. That's it for this, the enormous effort to protect and save the name. The sarcophagus was used to store the name and protect it forever …

Ka was a double man, that is what we call the spirit or soul. Ka was created at the same time as the physical body. Doubling occurs on the "wheel Khnuma God." Ka existed in the physical world, and always in the grave. It was just as important as the human need for food and drink. Egyptians were left in the graves of the dead products, alcoholic beverages, and worldly possessions for the ka. Ka to use them in the afterlife.

Ba can be described as someone — a personality. Like the human body, each ba was unique in every person. He moved into the body of a man after his physical death, and easily move between the physical world and the afterlife. Ba had the ability to take different forms.

Akh was an aspect of a man who wanted to join the gods in the afterlife, become immortal. It was created by the death of the holy texts and prayers, written letters, intended to increase the strength akh. Once this is achieved, the individual will have the opportunity for a second life after death, which would only mean the end of physical existence.

Intact body was an integral part of the after-life. Without a physical body there was no shade, no name, no ka, ba, or akh. The Egyptians believed that mummification secures rebirth in the afterlife.

From 21 May to 25 June 1994 a group of scientists from the University of Maryland and Long Island University, performed the first human mummification for nearly 2000 years. They used the technology of the ancient Egyptians, embalming tools, hundreds of fine Egyptian linen cloths, more than 600 pounds of sodium oxide, frankincense and myrrh, cedar oil, palm wine, and natural resins. Mummification took place at the University Medical School in Baltimore, Maryland.

These two men are responsible for a giant leap back in time — Ronn Wade, senior anatomical studies at the University Medical School in Baltimore, Maryland and Bob Brier, an Egyptologist at Long Island University. Their mummy called Mumab. According to Ronna, Mumab was tested after and during mummification and will retain its shape, while the other mummies can get out of shape. Unlike the ancient mummies, this is medical history, past, present, and future. Let's see what they have done and learned from Mumab.

For some time, Ronn and Bob look for a suitable donor. They had a list of requirements that had to meet the donor. They were looking for an average human specimen, one that could compare with the average Egyptian. It had to be someone who had donated his body to science and was available for the process of mummification, takes a lot of time … This should be someone who has never been exposed to a disease, and never moved the operation. The death must have occurred due to natural causes. It did not matter male or female. Fortunately, such a donor is found. He was an elderly man from Baltimore, who died of heart failure. Ancient Egyptian mummification process took 70 days. After this deadline, the old man from Baltimore will Mumab.

In light of the fact that the ancient Egyptians told us in countless texts and pictures on almost every aspect of their civilization, it is strange that they left such a hole in our knowledge. For example, we know very little about how the pyramids were created, or how obelisks were raised. Like these mysteries, the ancient Egyptians did not tell us anything about the process of mummification. Perhaps it was considered so secret, and it was entrusted only to the chosen word of mouth.

One surviving written report regarding mummification, was created by Greek historian Herodotus, who visited Egypt about 450 BC. He described how the Egyptians preserved their dead. But even with the testimony of Herodotus, many questions remained unclear. Much of the report-writing process of mummification Herodotus surface and is open to speculation. For example, the Egyptians used the 'natron' to dry the body. Some fragments were that the body "herbs in the solution" of sodium oxide. "This technique would require large tanks for impregnating corpses. This assumption has not received any evidence. Instead, there is evidence of the presence of large tables used for the drying process. But never was clear why these tables have dimensions of about six feet across, was wide enough to accommodate two corpses. these and other questions, scientists said in the mummification process Mumab.

The first step in creating a modern mummy: the need to gather the tools and components that will be needed for the process. Silver prints created replicas of Egyptian embalming tools. Foreman carpenter was hired to create an authentic embalming table, similar to one found in Egyptian tombs. Department of Ceramics at the University were authorized to do all the vessels needed for the process. Each was marked with hieroglyphs to indicate its function, the office has also made ritual vessels, and 365 ushabtis (figures spiritual workers to work in the world to its master for each day of the year).

Travel to Egypt was necessary to collect spices and oils that will be used. Bob went to the river bed Natrun area between Cairo and Alexandria, where he collected more than 600 pounds (270 kilograms) of sodium oxide, which will be needed. Here, the river Nile feeds several lakes that rises and falls each year, leaving large salt deposits along the shore. This 'natron' was used to dry the body. According to Ronna, "the" natron "- to get water from the tissue, if there is no water in the tissues, the body will not decompose."

It's time to start. Ronn and Bob moved the old man from Baltimore to his "tent cleaning", which in this case is the room School of Medicine in Baltimore. Here, the body was washed with a solution of "natron" and water. To dry the whole body, the internal organs had to be removed.

The first body was removed brain. The Egyptians believed that the brain was of little importance, and it can be removed. Once again we use the explanation of Herodotus. He states that the brain was removed, after piercing the bone at the top of nostrils, the ethmoid bone. Large bronze needle with a hooked end or spiral was used to perform this procedure. However, it was not clear how such a large body was removed through a small opening. This is suggestive that the Egyptians inserted the hook through the nostrils, and the brain could be removed in pieces. Has proven very difficult to remove the brain in this way. Ronn and Bob improvised. In the corpse lying on the back, they put the hook through the nose and managed to stir the brain tissue in an almost liquid substance. Then they turned the body over onto his stomach, and turned into a liquid brain, poured through the nostrils. Palm wine and incense were used to wash and clean the cavity of the skull.

Following the instructions of Herodotus, the next step was to remove the internal organs.

Herodotus described the use of round black stones for opening the abdominal cavity. It is accepted that this stone was made of obsidian, a black volcanic glass. This is suggestive that obsidian was used for ritual purposes. However, the material may have been used simply because it was the best material available for cutting human tissue. A small incision was made on the left side, through which the internal organs were removed. Heart — the only body that Egyptians left intact because it was considered a "repository" of the human soul. After removal of the internal organs were washed with frankincense, myrrh and palm wine. They would be dried after use 'natron'. After they were individually preserved, the bodies were stored in special vessels, called ritual vessels. Ritual vessels have long had the shape of head of the Egyptian gods, the four sons of Horus. They — guardians of viscera.

Four Sons of Horus:

"Patronize" the organs:

Once the internal organs were removed, rinsed and Bob Ronne abdominal and thoracic cavities of the body, using the palm wine and myrrh. This ritual must have had practical roots, as this would provide a more pleasant odor than that which usually comes from a dead body. The cavities were filled with small bags of "natron" to dry the corpse inside.

Embalming table was made to comply with the technical data of those that have been found in Egyptian tombs. Questions why this table was so big, soon we get a response. Since 'natron' first poured on the table and then to the body, it became clear that they will need in width to accommodate the body, completely surrounded by 600 pounds of sodium oxide.

The temperature was maintained at about 115 ° F (46 ° C). Humidity remained at 30% — the same conditions as in ancient Egypt. After 35 days of exposure, "natron" tissue "Mumaba" weight loss of 100 of his original 160 pounds.

Mummification process took only 35 days. Why, then, Egyptian mummification ritual takes 70 days? The answer may lie in the movements of star Sirius. Sirius was an important star Egyptians, and we know that they were following her movements very carefully. The rise of the star Sirius noted Egyptian New Year, the beginning of the season floods. Time when Sirius disappeared in the sky until the time returned (Egyptian New Year) was 70 days, maybe Egyptians equated these astronomical phenomena with the time needed from the death of the physical world to a revival in the afterlife.

Now that the process of drying the body was finished, the bags "natron", which had been placed inside the body could be removed. Empty cavity filled with palm wine and spices, myrrh, and packages of gauze. The body was rubbed with a mixture of five oils: frankincense, myrrh, palm, lotus and cedar. Scientists remove tissue samples for biopsy to check for the presence of bacteria. Remarkably, three months after his death, all the studies have indicated that there was no presence of bacteria. This was the point through which the mummification was considered a success.

The process has not been completed, because mummy has yet to be wrapped. Photos mummy of Thutmose III used as a guide. Zamatyvanie mummified body occurs with long linen bandages and shrouds that had been imported from Egypt. At each of these bands was linen with appropriate hieroglyphic inscriptions. They have been made using a natural resin.

Some ancient Egyptian mummies, this gum, completely covers the body. By the name of this resin and there was a name — a mummy. Some observers believed that the gum was bitumen. Persian word for bitumen — moumia. Complete winding process lasted for several days and required more than 6 layers or 20 pounds (9 kilograms) of laundry. According to the ancient practice of the heart amulet was placed over the heart Mumaba.

At this point, if this was Mumab Egyptian mummy, he has to burial rituals, which consisted of clearing and preparation for the afterlife, so-called "open mouth." Mumaba body is not designed for the afterlife. It now rests in the Museum of Man in San Diego. It will continue to be studied Ronnom Wade, Bob Brier, and scientists of this and future generations.

Category: Mystery stories

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