Human Remains; Mummified Body with Portrait


Mummified remains of a boy wrapped in fine linen, intricately arranged into concentric diamonds, with an encaustic panel portrait over the face. The excavator, Professor Flinders Petrie, described the bandaging as the most perfect example of the complex system of diagonal winding. The colours have now faded, but the thirteen layers were, from the outside, gilt, red, white, red, white, red, white, blue, white, red, white, brown and white. Flinders Petrie thought that the face was that of a girl, but X-rays and CT scans have revealed the body of a boy about five years old. The radiographs also show a metal plate (possibly gold) within the mouth on the surface of the tongue. X-rayed in November 1966 (Gray and Slow, 1968, pp 28-32) with further radiograph examination in 2012 (Loynes, 2015, pp. 82-83). Museum's annual report for year eneding 1911 p.29: "Mummy of a child beautifully bound in 12 distinct wrappings, with painted portrait of the deceaed bound in, from a cemetery at Hawara, Fayum, Egypt, period 1-2 century AD, [presented] by the British School of Archaeology, in Egypt, per Prof. Petrie."