Mummification: Ancient Egypt and New Kingdom

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Mummification is the form of embalming practiced by the ancient Egyptians. The mummification process changed over time from the Old Kingdom, when only kings could be mummified to the New Kingdom, in which everyone could be mummified. The entire process of mummification to be completed took 70 days. After a body was delivered to the per nefer, which is where the embalmers conducted their tasks. The first thing that was done was put the deceased on a slanted table.

The first thing that needed to be removed was the soft, moist body parts that would cause decay. As the embalmers removed these parts, blood and other bodily fluids came out and went down the table being collected into a bowl. During the old and Middle Kingdoms, the brain was left in the head, in which it just dried up over time. When these mummies are moved you can hear the hardened pieces of the brain rolling around in the mummies head. Then in the New Kingdom, the embalmers started removing the brain. They would break open the bone that separates the nasal cavity from the brain cavity. They did this by shoving a sharp instrument up the nose. After they broke the bone, the embalmers used a hook to either take the brain out piece by piece, or used the hook to stir the brain until it was liquefied. If it was liquefied they would turn the body face down so that the brain would spill out of the nostrils. The reason the Egyptians were so rough with the brain because they didn't think that the brain had a lot of importance in the persons body. They thought that it was just there to produce snot. Instead of the Egyptians thinking that the brain was where everyone got their intelligence, memory, thoughts, etc, they thought that the heart responsible for those things. The heart was sometimes left in the body, but other times it was removed and dried with natron. Then it was either put back in the corpses body or placed beside it in the coffin.

After the soft body parts were removed...
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