Saturday, March 13, 2010

Restoration and study of Ny-Maat-Ra at the Vatican

Catholic News Story (Carol Glatz)

The Vatican Museums had a rare opportunity to unravel some of the secrets inside a 2,000-year-old Egyptian mummy.

Ny-Maat-Re, a female mummy given to Pope Leo XIII in 1894, had been in a serious state of degradation since the 1990s. Poorly embalmed, the linen bandages under her back had rotted away and her spine and ribcage had collapsed.

In 2007 a Vatican expert decided to restore and study her further and the Vatican Mummy Project was born.

Egyptologist, Alessia Amenta, is the curator of the Vatican Museums' Department for the Antiquities of Egypt and the Near East. She told Catholic News Service that she assembled a team of top-notch experts from a variety of fields to come together to save Ny-Maat-Re, who is one of seven adult and two child mummies in the Vatican Museums' collections.

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