Egyptian mummy, 343-69 BCE
Mummification was a complicated burial process common in ancient Egypt. First the internal organs were removed, apart from the heart, which was considered to be the seat of the mind and the emotions. The lungs, liver, intestines and stomach were placed in separate canopic jars, to be buried with the body. The body was then dried with natron for forty days. Once dried, the fingers, toes, arms and legs were wrapped individually. The whole body was then wrapped in cloth with amulets and items to help the person see, hear, speak, taste and eat in the afterlife. The sarcophagus of this mummy features a prayer to Osiris, god of the dead, written in hieroglyphics.
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Glossary: human remains
term created as part of the NMSI human remains policy (from April 2007); Other terms used are 'blood' and 'human hair'
A corpse which has been preserved through natural or artificial methods, often for religious reasons.