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Researchers Used CT Scan to “Digitally Unwrap” a Mummy; Here’s What They Found!

A team of academics has “digitally unwrapped” the mummy of Egyptian King Amenhotep I using computer tomography (CT) scanning technology. The researchers from Cairo University used CT scans to investigate the mummy’s internals and revealed some previously unknown details. This is what was revealed.

CT Scan Used to Unwrap a Mummy!

Dr. Sahar Saleem, the lead researcher, recently published her findings in Frontiers magazine. In 1881, the Egyptian King’s mummy was discovered in Deir el-Bahari, a little village outside of the world-famous Valley of Kings. Scientists and experts have been hesitant to unwrap the mummies for the past 140 years, fearing that they would destroy the elaborate face mask and body coverings.

Dr. Saleem was able to digitally uncover King Amenhotep I’s mummy to discover many unknown truths thanks to developments in CT scan technology, which is used in the medical profession to non-invasively gather detailed images of a person’s internals for diagnostic purposes.

The King governed during Egypt’s New Kingdom period (between 1525 and 1504 BC) and was one of the earliest pharaohs of Egypt’s 18th Dynasty dynasty, which included other kings such as Akhenaten and the well-known Tutankhamun or King Tut. He died while he was only 35 years old. The king’s height was also confirmed to be 5’6′′.

In a statement to PA Media (via BBC) Saleem further stated that “Amenhotep I seems to have physically resembled his father; he had a narrow chin, a small narrow nose, curly hair, and mildly protruding upper teeth.”

It was also discovered that there were no visible wounds or damages on the body that could have caused his death. The researchers did discover a number of postmortem injuries, which they believe were caused by grave thieves. Grave robbers were the ones who stole valuable goods from the mummified bodies of Egyptian Kings, in case you didn’t know.

Mortuary priests of the 21st Dynasty “lovingly repaired” the damages 400 years after his death, using resin-treated linen to re-attach the mummy’s neck and body. It was twice reburied. In addition, CT scans revealed 30 hidden amulets and a “unique” golden girdle with gold beads inside Amenhotep’s mummy’s bandages. This refuted the theory that succeeding dynasties’ priests reused ornaments from past pharaohs’ funeral rituals.

One thing to note is that this isn’t the first time a mummy was unwrapped via CT Scan; it first happened in 1977. However, advancements in this tech have allowed researchers to get detailed information about mummies.

If you are further intrigued by this, you can check out Dr. Saleem’s in-depth report right here. Also, stay tuned for more interesting stories like this one!

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