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on their sides with gum. The cost of mummifying a body in this fashion was a talent of silver, i.e., about £240, according to Diodorus (i, 91, 92).
In the second method of mummifying the brain was not removed at all, and the intestines were simply dissolved and removed in a fluid state. The body was also laid in salt or natron which, it is said, dissolved everything except the skin and bones. The cost of mummifying in this manner was 20 minae, or about £20.
The third method of embalming was employed for the poor only. It consisted simply of cleaning the body by injecting some strong astringent, and then salting the body for 70 days. The cost in this case was very little.
The account given by Diodorus agrees generally with that of Herodotus. He adds, however, that the incision was made on the left side of the body, and that the "dissector” having made the incision fed away, pursued and stoned by those who had witnessed the ceremony. It would seem that the dissector merely fulfilled a religious obligation in fleeing away, and that he had not much to fear. Diodorus goes on to say that the Egyptians kept the bodies of their ancestors in splendid chambers, and that they had the opportunity of contemplating the faces of those who died before their time. In some particulars he is right, and in others wrong. He lived too late (about B.C. 40) to know what the well-made Theban mummies were like, and his experience therefore would only have familiarized him with the Egypto-Roman mummies, in which the limbs were bandaged separately, and the contour of their faces, much blunted, was to be seen through the thin and tightly-drawn bandages which covered the face. In such examples the features of the face can be clearly distinguished underneath the bandages.
An examination of Egyptian mummies will show that the accounts given by Herodotus and Diodorus are generally correct, for mummies with or without ventral incisions are found, and some are preserved by means of balsams and gums, and others by bitumen and natron. The skulls of mummies, which may be seen by hundreds in caves and pits at Thebes, contain absolutely nothing, a fact which proves that the embalmers were able not only to remove the brain, but also to take out the membranes without injuring or breaking the nose in any way. The heads of mummies are found, at times, to be filled with bitumen, linen rags, or resin. The bodies, which have been filled with resin or some such substance, are of a greenish colour, and the skin has the appearance of being tanned. Such mummies, when unrolled, perish rapidly and break easily. Usually, however, the resin and aromatic gum process is favourable to the preservation of the teeth and hair. Bodies from which the intestines have been removed, and which have been preserved by being filled with bitumen, are quite black and hard. The features are preserved intact, but the body is heavy and unfair to look upon. The bitumen penetrates the bones so completely that it is sometimes difficult to distinguish what is bone and what is bitumen. The arms, legs, hands, and feet of such mummies break with a sound like the cracking of chemical glass tubing; they burn freely. Speaking generally, they will last for ever.
When a mummy has been preserved by natron, that is, a mixture of carbonate, sulphate, and muriate of soda, the skin is found to be very hard, and it hangs loosely from the bones in much the same way as it hangs from the skeletons of the monks preserved in the crypt beneath the Capuchin convent at Floriana in Malta. The hair of such mummies usually falls off when touched.
When the friends of a dead Egyptian were too poor to pay for a good, expensive method of embalmment, the body could be preserved by two very cheap methods; one method was to soak it in salt and hot bitumen, and the other in salt only. In the salt and bitumen process every cavity of the
body was filled with bituinen, and the hair disappeared. Clearly it is to the bodies which were preserved in this way that the name "mummy," or bitumen, was first applied.
The salted and dried body is easily distinguishable. The skin is like paper, the features and hair have disappeared, and the bones are very brittle and white.
The art of mummifying arrived at the highest pitch of perfection at Thebes. The mummies of the first six dynasties drop to pieces on exposure to the air, and smell slightly of bitumen ; those of the XIth dynasty are of a yellowish colour and very brittle ; those of the XIIth dynasty are black. The method of embalming varied at different periods and places. From the XVIIIth to the XXIst dynasties the Memphis mummies are black, while those made at Thebes during the same period are yellowish in colour, and have the nails of the hands and feet dyed yellow with the juice of the ḥenna plant. After the XXVIth dynasty the mummies made at both places are quite black and shapeless ; they are also very heavy and tough, and can only be broken with difficulty.
What the mummies which were made three or four hundred years after Christ are like, the writer, never having seen one unrolled, is unable to say. About B.C. 100 the Greeks began to paint the portrait of the dead upon the wrappings which covered the face.
The art of mummifying was carried on in Egypt for nearly 500 years after the birth of Christ, for the Greeks and Romans adopted the custom freely. We may
say that we know for a certainty that the art of embalming was known and practised for about 5,000 years.
In the account of embalming given us by Herodotus, we are told that the internal organs of the body were removed, but he does not say what was done with them. We now know that they also were mummified and were preserved in four jars, the covers of which were made in the shape of the heads of the four children of Horus, the genii of the dead, whose names were Mestha, Hāpi, Țuamutef, and Qebḥsennuf. These genii have been compared with the four beasts in the Book of Revelation (chap. iv, 7). The jars and the genii to whom they were dedicated were under the protection of Isis, Nephthys, Neith, and Serq respectively. They are called 'Canopic' jars, because they resemble the vase shape of Osiris called Canopus, and they are made of Egyptian porcelain, marble, calcareous stone, terra-cotta, wood, etc. The jar of Mesthå received the large intestines, that of Hāpi the smaller intestines, that of Tuamutef the heart, and that of Qebḥsennuf the liver. Each jar was inscribed with a legend stating that the genius to whom it was dedicated protected and preserved the part of the dead body that was in it. · In the case of poor people who could not afford a set of canopic jars, it was usual to have a set of wax figures made in the shape of the four genii of the dead, and to place them in the dead body with the intestines, which were put back. In the time of the XXVIth dynasty, and later, poverty or laziness made people consider the interior parts of the body to be sufficiently well guarded if figures of these genii were roughly drawn on the linen bandages. It was customary at one time to lay a set of these figures, made of porcelain or bead-work, upon
the chest of the mummy.
It was the fashion some years ago to state in books of history that the ancient Egyptian was a negro, and some distinguished historians still make this statement, notwithstanding Professor Owen's distinct utterance, “taking the
sum of the correspondence notable in collections of skulls " from Egyptian graveyards as a probable indication of the “hypothetical primitive race originating the civilised con“ ditions of cranial departure from the skull-character of such
race, that race was certainly not of the Australoid type, “ is more suggestive of a northern Nubian or Berber basis. “ But such suggestive characters may be due to intercourse or 'admixture'at periods later than [the] XIIIth dynasty; * they are not present, or in a much less degree, in the “skulls, features, and physiognomies of individuals of from "the IIIrd to the XIIth dynasties.” The character of the ancient Egyptian, and of the race to which he belonged, has been vindicated by examinations of the skulls of Egyptian mummies.
If the pure ancient Egyptian, as found in mummies and represented in paintings upon the tombs, be compared with the negro, we shall find that they are absolutely unlike in every important particular. The negro is prognathous, but the Egyptian is orthognathous; the bony structure of the negro is heavier and stronger than that of the Egyptian ; the hair of the negro is crisp and woolly, while that of the Egyptian is smooth and fine.
It may be pointed out that the Egyptians originally took trouble to preserve the bodies of the dead because they believed that after a series of terrible combats in the underworld, the soul, triumphant and pure, would once more return to the clay in which it had formerly lived. It was necessary, then, to preserve the body that it might be ready for the return of the soul. It was also necessary to build large and beautiful tombs, in order that the triumphant soul, having revivified its ancient house of clay, might have a fit and proper abode in which to dwell. The pyramid tombs built by the kings of the earlier dynasties, and the vast many-chambered sepulchres hewn in the sides of the Theban hills during the XVIIIth and XIXth dynasties, were not built to gratify the pride of their owners. The belief concerning mummification seems to have been considerably modified at a later period, for the evidence now available indicates that the later Egyptians preserved the material body in order that the spiritual body might spring from it, which result was partly due to the ceremonies performed and the words recited at the tomb by the priests and pious persons.