Human Remains; Mummified Body of Horwennefer



Hor-wen-nefer was a high-ranking priest at the sacred city of Abydos, the burial place of the first kings of Egypt and a cult centre of Osiris. His parents were called Nesanhar and Satsat, and he is named after two gods: Hor (Horus) and wen-nefer, another name for Osiris meaning ‘the one who continues to be perfect’. He had many titles including that of Royal Acquaintance. He also shares the same name as a local king who led a rebellion against the Ptolemaic rulers about 200 BC. The body of Hor-wen-nefer has been carefully preserved by the embalmers. CT-scans revealed that the brain had been removed through the nose and molten resin was poured into the skull. Linen plugs were placed in the nostrils to seal them shut. The outer wrappings were coated with bitumen to protect the body from bacteria and parasites. A shroud was placed over his mummy decorated with gilded and painted cartonnage figures including the Four Sons of Horus, and the goddesses Isis and Nephthys. A gilded cartonnage mask and foot cover were already damaged in 1870 but are now missing following the wartime bombing of Liverpool in 1941. X-rayed in November 1966 (Gray and Slow, 1968, pp 32-35) with further radiograph examination in 2017 by Dr R. Loynes (unpublished).