Saturday, October 28, 2006

Sarcophagus to go on sale at Christie's

"The leading lot in Christie’s sale of Antiquities, to take place on December 7, is an Egyptian painted wood sarcophagus and mummy for Neskhons, Third Intermediate Period, Dynasty XXI, circa 990 – 940 B.C. (estimate on request). Sarcophagi of this quality rarely appear on the market and Christie’s is delighted to offer this exquisite consignment. The last time a mummy with sarcophagus was sold at auction was in May 2003, when Christie’s South Kensington sold the sarcophagus and mummy of a priest of Amun for $1.4 million which still stands as the world auction record for a sarcophagus and mummy."
See the above page for the full story, including background information about the sarcophagus, and a lovely photograph.


Anonymous said...

This is the mummy I knew and loved as a child. He was displayed in the bottom half of his coffin, with the top suspended above him. The museum had him X-rayed in the 1930's, and these were displayed above him. He was hidden in the basement, near the end of a very dark spooky corridor; you had to know he was there and really look for him.

I'm furiously angry at the WRHS for putting up yet another piece of Cleveland's history on the auction block. I was upset enough when they 'gave' him to the Wm. Carlos Emory museum on 'permanent loan', but this goes beyond all stupidity!

For the record, the story isn't quite accurate about his COD - his femur was shattered, w/ the bone sticking out of the skin. The doctors who performed the X-rays thought his COD was due to infection because of this. And yes, he was unwrapped, with his hands crossed in front of his groin. IIRC, they thought he was about 19 years old at the time of his death.

kat newkirk

Anonymous said...

A few corrections- the mummy and sarcophagus were never loaned to the Carlos Museum at Emory U but rather the McClung Museum at UT Knoxville. More recent X-rays (1990s) show that indeed the hands are lowered, but show no damage to the femur; his age is thought to be 20s. Fortunately for the city of Cleveland the Museum of Art has equally fine sarcophagai; the WRHS can use these funds to focus on things related to Cleveland and Ohio, which is their mission.