Fish Mummy

About this object

Mummified Nile perch fish wrapped in bandages and bound together with numerous concentric windings of palm fibre rope. Thousands of pilgrims travelled to sacred sites throughout Egypt to give offerings to the gods. Many places in the Nile Valley and the Delta were linked to different gods and their animal cults. Nile perch were fish sacred to the goddess Neith and mummified at Esna where this fish mummy was buried.

The mummy was X-rayed and CT imaged at the Royal Manchester Children’s Hospital on 19th April 2016 as part of the University of Manchester’s Animal Bio Bank Project (no. AEABB652). Report by Lidija McKnight and Stephanie Woolham: "Complete and articulated skeleton of a fish with a thin layer of linen bound with papyrus reed. The skeleton appears to be a good condition compared to other fish mummies – there is no obvious fracturing and displacement of the bones, presumably because the style of wrapping has helped to keep everything in position".

Object specifics

  • Type
    Animal Remains
  • Culture
    Late Period; Ptolemaic - Romano-Egyptian
  • Artist/Maker
  • Place made
    Africa: Northern Africa: Egypt: Esna
  • Date made
    664 BC - AD 200 about
  • Materials
    Fish; Fibre Plant; Textile
  • Location
    World Museum, Level 3, Ancient Egypt Gallery
  • Acquisition
    Gift of the Egyptian Excavations Committee of the Institute of Archaeology, Liverpool
  • Collector
    Liverpool University Institute of Archaeology
  • Place collected
    Africa: Northern Africa: Egypt: Esna
  • Date collected
  • Measurements
    40 mm x 90 mm x 270 mm
  • Related people
    Liverpool University Institute of Archaeology ( Collector, previous owner)


Previous owners

Object view = Humanities
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