Mummy in a unique mud cocoon testifies to an ancient scam

For the first time in history, a mummy from Ancient Egypt was discovered in an unusual vestment - the body is walled up in a multilayer cocoon of mud and cloth. The discovery was made by Australian scientists who studied a gift to the Sydney Museum from the famous Victorian collector Charles Nicholson. The 3, 400-year-old mummy has intrigued them since the first CT scan in 1999, when they discovered the oddities inside the cocoon.

In the period from 1294 BC. to 945 BC In ancient Egypt, resin came into fashion during funeral ceremonies, which was used to impregnate linen. The cunning antiquities dealers sold just such a mummy to Nicholson, but they kept silent that it was fake. The analysis showed that the body belongs to a woman who died in 1207 BC, but the coffin itself with the female name "Merua" was created not earlier than 1000 BC, 200 years later. But it was beautifully decorated, so the swindlers built a "complete set", putting the mummy in someone else's empty coffin.

Interestingly, the scam came out on two levels. Initially, not the body, but already the mummy's left leg was badly damaged, probably by the grave robbers. To hide this fact, as well as to give the mummy a rich look, but at the same time not to waste expensive imported resin, it was wrapped in a cloth, on which a mixture of liquid mud, straw and river silt was applied in several layers. An additional outer layer of linen was painted white with crushed calcite and patterned with red ocher.

Then, already in the 19th century, the mummy received deep injuries to the head and neck, affecting all layers of the mud cocoon. To prevent it from falling apart, metal pins were inserted inside - this is already a new, not ancient Egyptian technology. The cover was quickly restored, and already in this form the mummy got into the Australian museum.