As I went back through to do new research on these bodies and varies things from their lives that I could find information on, all I could think of was how in the world do we know these things! How we can translate the word Bast to learn it means devour and perfume. These are ancient languages we are dealing with, how can we even figure that the word is Bast let alone to be able to translate it. I know I am very behind when it comes to history, no pun intended but history isn’t my favorite and for the amount that I had to go though I learned a lot and now have a whole new set of questions. The theme here is knowledge and technology because the amount of both that were poured into these subjects from history to give us the facts that we have about their lives and culture is unbelievable. I learned not only that these people turned wild cats into domestic creators but that also evolved physically through the process. I learned about their religious practices, their god’s, and their sacrifices. I learned geography because people figured out where cities were specifically around the Nile River and what was the purpose of each side. And finally a piece of information that really struck me was Karnak. The biggest religious building in the world but more importantly when they recreated this site, they said, “This derelict place is still capable of overshadowing many wonders of the modern world and in its day must have been awe-inspiring” (1). And the fact what we can even know that about a building that only lasted until 100 AD is awe-inspiring to me. But most importantly I learned about mummies which I found very interesting. They are so foreign to our culture today it’s hard not to find them fascinating. The prehistoric mummies were thought to have happened by an accident. They started in Egypt and the sand and air must have been preserved through the pits in sand. It wouldn’t be until 2600 BC that the practice would be on purpose. I have learned the purpose for the detailed burials: to send their souls into the afterlife. However, the process of creating a mummy can become extremely time consuming, up to seventy days and different people were designated to certain jobs. It starts with removing organs that would deteriorate quicker, such as the brain tissue through the nostrils. The heart was left because it was believed to be the center of the individual’s being while the others were placed in jars and buried with the body. Next, the body goes through a drying out process. This is accomplished through covering the body with natron, a type of salt, and putting it inside the body as well. The idea is that this will stop the body from decaying allowing us to examine today to determine the age of 3,000 years ago and what they might have looked like. Finally, linen cloth lines the bodies for preservation. Then a mask is placed on the face, a lot of the time, painted. Before buried in the tombs, they were placed in a coffin (2). And we wouldn’t know any of this if it wasn’t for the scientists that study them and the technology that they have to do their job.
1. "Karnak Temple." Discovering Ancient Egypt. N.p., n.d. Web. 13 May 2016.
2. "Egyptian Mummies." Encyclopedia Smithsonian:. N.p., n.d. Web. 13 May 2016.