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23.1.2020

My first encounter with the ‘Adidas Mummy’ was a Facebook post. It linked to an article from the Siberian Times, and I was excited because Mongolian archaeology features so rarely in the news, let alone on my newsfeed. 

So-called because of the three distinctive stripes on her boots reminiscent of the Adidas logo, this medieval mummy was discovered in the Altai Mountains in Western Mongolia in 2016. Local herders discovered her burial site at Uzuur Gyalan, where excavations promptly began (althou...

14.1.2020

It was the smell that made me pause in our busy schedule and savour the moment. For the sweet spicy scent was gently emanating from the coffin of Shep en-Mut, a married woman who died around 800 BC and was buried in Thebes, the daughter of the Carrier of the Milk Jar named NesAmenempit. The coffin contained her mummified remains which I and my colleague were carefully placing in a display case. The busyness surrounding us was of museum timetables as we installed the new Ancient Worlds gallery. S...

To the north of the popular tourist destinations below the River Liffey, in an industrial section of the growing city, stands a somewhat unimpressive church. St. Michan’s church was founded in Dublin, Ireland in 1095. Parts of the structure date back almost 1,000 years ago, but the current church building was constructed the 17th century. Today, the Anglican church conducts services, and is open to the public for tours of the historic collections, including an 18th century pipe organ, upon which...

29.4.2019

How do mummies, or the broader spectrum of burial rituals (in Egypt and further afield), fit within the context of the art museum?

25.2.2019


Human mummies have never been all that fascinating to me, sure, I had the little kid fascination, but I think I always knew there was something a bit dubious about showing off human remains. The Bog Bodies toured my home town and I had already seen them and was very uncomfortable with them so I conveniently lost my school permission slip and stayed at school watching a film that day. I did go through a period of fascination with animal mummies, I liked that they were a way to honour gods that I...

I first heard about the “West Virginia Mummies of the Insane” on a podcast, and I immediately knew I needed to know more. The podcast described the mummies as home-made experimental mummies, made from the remains of two patients bought from the nearby Trans-Allegheny Lunatic Asylum, also known as the West Virginia Hospital for the Insane . Today, the mummies are on display in a bathroom of a train station which serves as the Barbour County Historical Museum in Phillippi, West Virginia. I had so...

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