Apr 02 2021 - 09:59

Egypt to transport nearly two dozen mummies to new home

Egypt is rushing to set the scene for the movement of 22 royal Lebanon, news ,lbci ,أخبار Museum, Mummies,Egypt,Egypt is rushing to set the scene for the movement of 22 royal
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Egypt is rushing to set the scene for the movement of 22 royal mummies to a new home on Saturday (April 3), lining their travel route with lights and banners and boosting security ahead of the large event, dubbed 'The Pharaohs Golden Parade'.

Having taken months of planning, the event is meant to transport some of ancient Egypt's most prominent mummies through a convoy, from the Egyptian Museum in Tahrir to their final resting place in the National Egyptian Museum of Civilization in Fustat.

Each mummy will be placed in a capsule, explained Egyptologist Zahi Hawass in an interview with Reuters, filled with nitrogen for protection. The carts carrying the mummies were especially designed to cradle the bodies to ensure safety and stability, added Hawass.

The mummies, which include 18 kings and 4 queens, mainly belong to the New Kingdom and are up to 3,000 years old.

They will be moved alongside their grave goods for 48 minutes through the streets of Cairo and by Tahrir Square, where an ancient obelisk and four ram-headed sandstone sphinxes were placed on the square's busy roundabout last year amid contested renovations.

The mummies have had a very long and complex life, said Salima Ikram, Distinguished Professor of Egyptology at the American University in Cairo.

"Now is the last time, we think, that the mummies are being moved, in 2021, so they can be seen in their full majesty, together with their grave goods," said Ikram.

The parade is one of several efforts to attract tourism in Egypt after the industry received a painful blow due to the coronavirus pandemic, dropping visitor numbers in the country to 3.5 million last year from 13.1 million in 2019.

The mummies to be moved were discovered in two caches in Luxor's Deir Al Bahari and Valley of the Kings, the earliest in 1871.

The oldest mummy on Saturday's convoy will be that of Seqenenre Tao, the last king of the 17th Dynasty, whose recent CT scan confirmed speculations of a violent death. The parade will also include the mummies of Ramses II, Seti I, and Ahmose-Nefertari.

Although there is always a risk in moving the mummies via parade, they would be "getting their due respects" amid heightened security efforts, said Ikram.

"These are the kings of Egypt," she said. "These are the pharaohs, and it is a way of showing respect."

To watch the full report, please click on the video above. 
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