Archeologists have made an incredible discovery inside an ancient Egyptian coffin that’s been sitting around at the University of Sydney for 150 years.
Originally thought to be empty, the team actually found mummified human remains inside the 2,500-year-old coffin when they flipped it open. Sydney Uni has had a secret mummy for 150 bloody years.
“We are about to start a really detailed project to scientifically investigate these remains in the coffin and ask a whole bunch of questions, but really, ‘Who is inside the coffin?'” said lead investigator, Dr Jamie Fraser.
The body is not whole and the remains themselves have apparently been tampered with. “A tomb robber has probably come in and rooted all the way through trying to find jewels and amulets,” Dr Fraser said.
Which one of you has been rooting around in the very old coffin? You’re probably cursed now and that’s your own damn fault.
According to hieroglyphics inscribed on the coffin, it was made for a priestess named Mer-Neith-it-es, but as researchers point out, coffins like this don’t always contain who they say they do. Way back in the day, the mummies would be discarded from their original coffins, but Egyptian antiquity merchants would fill it on up with another mummy if a customer requested. Just grab one from out the back, champ.
But even though a lot of this particular body is missing, radiologist, Professor John Magnussen, says there’s enough to piece together at least part of the mystery.
“It’s older, and it’s got some early degenerative changes and the sacrum is fused, so we know it’s definitely an adult,” he said, surmising that it’s “actually they’re the remains of an adult of 30-plus”.
After completing a CT scan on the coffin and its contents, Egyptologist Dr Connie Lord set to work sifting through the remains in search of important toenails.
“There could even be toenails which would be thrilling — that’s what I want,” she said. “The toenails are fantastic for radiocarbon dating.”
Dr Lord also found that the resin poured into the mummy’s skull after its brain was removed resembled that of Tutankhamun‘s. “It could tell us so much,” she said. “It’s just an incredible find, I don’t remember anyone finding something like this.”
Incredible stuff. Secret mummies are mad.
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Image: ABC News