Who Am I?By Lily and Kayla
I walk into the dank, damp tent used for embalming. A body lies on a table in the middle. He is a dead nobleman, in the process of being embalmed. Today we are going to soak him in natron salt, to dry out his body. Being an embalmer is hard work. There are many steps in the mummification process, and a lot of responsibility rests on my shoulders. After all, I am responsible for insuring that the dead person reaches the afterlife and achieves immortality!

HOW IMPORTANT IS EMBALMING?
Extremely important! It is vital that a person is embalmed for him or her to safely reach the afterlife. A persons soul must be able to rejoin it's body in the afterlife and It won't be able to if its body has rotted away in the meantime! Some people save up their whole life just to be mummified! Anyone can be made into a mummy, but because of the expensive costs, usually only pharaohs, noblemen, and important people are mummified.

HOW DO EMBALMERS MAKE A MUMMY?
Making a mummy is a long process that requires determination and skill. First, we collect and then clean the body. Then, using a hooked instrument, we remove the brains through the nose. The third step is to remove the internal organs. A cut is made on the left side of the stomach. Through this cut, the liver, lungs, stomach, and intestines are removed and stored in Canopic Jars. The heart is left in the body, because it will be needed in the afterlife. The body is now ready to be soaked in natron (a type of salt) for forty days. At the end of the forty days, the salt will have completely dried out the body. We then rub the skin with oils, to make it softer, and the cavity in the body will be stuffed with linen, or for the less wealthy, rags and sawdust. Finally, it's time to wrap the mummy in linen bandages. Those who are well prepared will have been saving up their linen for their whole life. Wrapping a mummy can take about 15 days, and up to 20 layers of bandages! One fully wrapped up, shrouds are placed over the body. Amulets are oftentimes placed within the bandages, and many people, especially the rich, will have masks placed over their heads. The last step is for the body to be placed in a coffin. After that, it's time for us to get busy making a new mummy!

WHAT ARE SOME OF THE MOST FASCINATING THINGS ABOUT MUMMIES AND THE MUMMIFICATION PROCESS?
There's so many interesting things, it's hard to pick a few! Here's one: When a person dies, the body is made to look as realistic as possible while being mummified. Making a body look more realistic can include stuffing the body with linen bandages, adding a false limb, and even putting fake eyes into the eye sockets! False eyes can be made out of onions. Since onions have strong antiseptic qualities, they can also be stuffed into the body cavity in place of linen bandages. I have mummified all sorts of creatures, from cats to monkeys to beetles, and of course humans! Another astonishing thing about mummies is that for almost 500 years, people in Europe used a black powder to help them get better when they were sick. Some people made a mistake and thought that the black powder was black stuff found on mummies. So people started to grind mummies into a powder. They would sell the powder all over Europe, and people would eat it! (Doesn't it remind you of cannibalism?)

THEN AND NOW
Mummification was important to the Ancient Egyptians because they believed that in order to reach the afterlife their bodies must be carefully preserved. Over time, the Egyptains came up with a way to keep the body from rotting away, by using a process called embalming. Nowadays, people some people still choose to have thier bodies preserved. Bodies can be frozen, or put in coffins, though people aren't mummified and wrappped up in bandages much anymore! Some people also believe in an afterlife now, though being preserved isn't a requirement for getting into the afterlife. Another thing that is different is that in Ancient Egypt, people actually looked forward to going to the afterlife, and now, people are a little less eager to die. All in all, although it is very different from Ancient Egyptain mummification, some people are still preserved today, or still believe in an afterlife.

LINKS

Watch a Video About Making a Mummy
This video will show you all the steps to making a mummy. It is very interesting and informative.

For Some Funny Mummy Information
This site gives all sorts of information on mummies, but it's not boring at all! It has cartoons, fun facts, and some really funny thought bubbles. To see mummy information presented to you in a new way, click on this site.

Make Your Own Mummy!!!
This site will allow you to make your own mummy (It's not the one we did in class). If you're up to a challenge, test your embalming skills here!

Mummy Games!
This site has TONS of mummy games you can play! Click on the link below for even more games!

All Sorts Of Egypt Games
This link is from the same site as above. Click on any of the topics listed to see more about it and find cool links and games to explore. This site covers all sorts of subjects about Ancient Egypt.

Still MORE Games and Stories!
This is also from the same site as the two above, with still MORE games and stories about Ancient Egypt.

Mummy and Ancient Egypt information
This link will bring you to a site with a list of categories relating to Ancient Egypt. Click on any of the subjects to learn more about it.




Screen_shot_2012-02-01_at_9.42.16_AM.pngQUICK FUN FACTS:
  • Ramses II was issued his very own passport for a trip to France!
  • It took 70 days to prepare a mummy.
  • Mummies were soaked in salt for 40 days because 40 was considered a magical number.
  • Some mummies were found wearing hats in ancient tombs!
  • Natron salt is found in dried up lake beds.
  • Some Ancient Egyptians who were worried about a lack of food in the afterlife had food mummified so it could be buried with them.
  • The heart of a person was left in the body so that in the afterlife, it could be weighed to see if the person was good or bad.
  • The oldest mummies ever found came from Chile and Peru.
  • Mummies heads are collectibles: In some places around the world they can be bought or traded!
  • Unwrapped, a mummies bandages could stretch for half a mile!


Works Cited
" The Mummification Process - YouTube ." YouTube - Broadcast Yourself. . N.p., n.d. Web. 24 Jan. 2012. <http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-MQ5dL9cQX0>.
Barrow, Mandy. "Ancient Egypt Mummies and the Afterlife for Kids." Woodlands Junior School, Tonbridge, Kent UK. N.p., n.d. Web. 24 Jan. 2012. <http://www.woodlands-junior.kent.sch.uk/Homework/egypt/mummies.htm>.
"Death And The Afterlife." The Telford Homepage. N.p., n.d. Web. 24 Jan. 2012. <http://www.the-telfords.pwp.blueyonder.co.uk/egypt/afterlife.htm>.
"Mummy Introduction." Salariya Publishing. N.p., n.d. Web. 24 Jan. 2012. <http://www.salariya.com/web_books/mummy/intro/pages/intro.html>.
Steedman, Scott . The Egyptain News. New York: Schoolastic Inc., 1997. Print.
mummies, studying, and we learn alot about ancient people.. "Mummy Facts." Kids.Summum - Summum Mummification. N.p., n.d. Web. 3 Feb. 2012. <http://kids.summum.us/mummification/facts/>.
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