The Mummy’s Head
Sounds like the title for a Mummy movie, doesn’t it? Right alongside THE MUMMY’S HAND, THE MUMMY’S TOMB, THE MUMMY’S CURSE, and THE MUMMY’S GHOST. (You all HAVE seen all these Universal classics, right? Right?) It’s actually a reference to this news story, though, that popped up in my newsfeed and made me squeal like a preteen girl. (Unfortunately it was first covered on a Fox News site, so I had to google the subject to find it covered elsewhere before I could use it. I won’t support malicious deception in the media, even where a novelty story is concerned.)
Excavators working at a dig in Deir el-Bersha, Egypt, in 1915 discovered a severed mummy head sitting on top of its coffin. Or somebody’s coffin. The tomb had been ransacked by graverobbers and the mummies inside–those of Middle Kingdom official Djehutynakht and his spouse–treated with indignities. Whose head was this? His or hers? Nobody knew for decades. Then the FBI got involved. In what marked the first–er, make that the second–time on record that DNA has been successfully taken from a mummy and identified, it was determined that the head belonged to Djehutynakht. Examination of the head even revealed it had undergone a tricky procedure to remove portions of its mandible during the mummification process. This latter would’ve allowed the mummy to eat, drink, and, presumably, talk in the afterlife. Hey, these things are important.