Featuring more than 100 objects from the internationally renowned Egyptian collection of the British Museum, Mummy: Secrets of the Tomb explores the rituals of death and burial in ancient Egypt and uncovers mysteries that have shrouded mummies for millennia.
There are few civilizations that have aroused as much interest and intrigue as that of Ancient Egypt. With its distinctive artistic heritage and vast monumental remains, Egypt has held a continuing fascination for outsiders throughout time. And perhaps nothing has piqued people’s interest more than its funerary beliefs and practices.
In this riveting exhibition, we focus on the life and death of Nesperennub, a temple priest who lived 3,000 years ago. The exhibition opens with a 3-D film*, narrated by Patrick Stewart, which shows the virtual unwrapping of Nesperennub’s mummy using the most advanced scanning technology currently available. Peering beneath the linen wrapping, visitors will see how this temple priest may have looked and lived. These vivid details provide insight into the process of mummification as well as life expectancy, health, and disease in ancient Egypt.
In addition to Nesperennub’s mummy and coffin, visitors will view more than 100 objects related to Egyptian society and its funerary rituals, as well as learn the importance of these objects in ensuring eternal life. Some of the objects in the exhibition include additional human and animal mummies; a gilded mask; Egyptian jewelry; canopic jars used for preserving the liver, lungs, stomach, and intestines of the deceased; massive sarcophagi lids; statuary; and tomb lintels.
*Mummy: Secrets of the Tomb is complemented by a 21-minute, realistic 3-D movie shown prior to the exhibition. After 2,800 years, technology has unlocked much information about the mummy of Egyptian priest Nesperennub, including age, family, health, mummification practices, and ritual elements. The content is recommended for visitors age seven to adult.
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The Banner Exhibition Program at VMFA is made possible by the Julia Louise Reynolds Fund. Additional support for the exhibition is provided by the Lettie Pate Whitehead Evans Exhibition Endowment.
Education programs for Mummy: Secrets of the Tomb are sponsored by MeadWestvaco Foundation.
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