top of page

Roman Era Mummy, 2nd century AD

Click on the pictures for a closer view.

This female mummy is from the el Hiba/Sedment area near Faiyum, Egypt.  She died and was mummified in the 2nd century AD during the Roman rule of Egypt.  She endured several periods of malnutrition; experts can tell this by the condition of her bones.


The brain and the internal organs were not removed from this mummy.  This is probably due to her poor status and to the fact that the technique of mummification was no longer widely practiced as Roman burial traditions were taking over in Egypt at this time.


The mummy's sarcophagus is adorned with a combination of hieroglyphics and hieratic signs. The hieroglyphics were translated by Dr. Emily Teeter of the Oriental Institute in 1992. The listed prayers invoke Osiris asking for "good burial."  This mummy's name is unknown as it is not written on her sarcophagus. 


 The degredation of the mummification ritual can also be observed in the illustrations on the sarcophagus.  The upper register shows Anubis at left and center, both in his human/jackal and jackal forms.  It is unclear which god is represented by the beast-head figure on the right. Beneath, the artist attempted to illustrate the four sons of Horus. There should be an ape, a jackal, a human and a falcon, but there is more than one falcon.   The names are also incorrect as Qebehsenuef (normally a falcon) is labeled Dwumutef (normally a jackal); the upper right figure is labeled Imseti (normally a man) and the upper left is labeled Hapi (normally an ape).

bottom of page