by Zen Kent
Mummies are dead people that are wrapped up in cloth. Mummies had their organs removed. Mummies had to be in natron salt crystals to dry out. Then the mummy had to be wrapped up and decorated. Mummies are MUMMIFICATED.|
The ancient Egyptians made mummies because they believed in immortality, which is having a life forever in the afterworld. They believed that the afterworld would be just like the life they had when they were alive. The people wanted to take their things with them to the afterlife. They all wanted to be mummified.
Embalming was not a fast and easy job. First they give the dead person a bath. Then they removed his brain, guts, stomach, lungs and liver, but not the heart. Why did they remove organs before they embalmed the body? Well, the priests didn't want the body to get slimy so they cleaned out the gicky stuff. It must have been stinky and they probably had a student clean out the stomach and guts! If I were a priest of ancient Egypt, I'd rather be embalming a skinny person because their insides wouldn't be as big and heavy. Do you know what happened to the organs? They made little, like mummies out of those organs and put them in jars called canopic jars. I made this one:
Then the body was put in Natron salt for a month, a week and a couple of days. Then they sewd him up and cast spells on him like "He'll be, like, rich in the Next World". What do you think they did with the brain? They took it out with a hooked kind of stick and threw it away. They thought the heart was the most important and the brain was not.
After the salt, they wrapped him up and then put him in a sarcophagus. A sarcophagus is a kind of box that has a face on it and very interesting designs. The Pharaohs had their sarcophagus made of gold and put into an enormous pyramid.
The dead person has to get past these mazes and stuff and passed snakes and crocodiles and 42 judges and the heart weighing. If you were pretty good, Amun (the creature god and god of Thebes) helped you through the gates to the afterlife and would help you get through the tests. How do we know all this stuff? We have learned how to read their writing called hyrogrifix. Their ideas were immortalized in this way.
I would say embalming worked because we found mummies over 3,300 years later!