A procession of drifts brought the mummified remains of 22 pharaohs, including Egypt’s most powerful ancient queen, through Cairo Saturday evening, in an attractive parade to a new resting place.
Under significant security, the mummies were driven on floats 7 kilometres (four miles) throughout the capital from the iconic Egyptian Museum to the brand-new National Museum of Egyptian Civilisation.
The National Museum of Egyptian Civilization in Cairo, the brand-new resting location for the 22 mummies AFP/ Khaled DESOUKI
Called the “Pharaohs’ Golden Parade”, the 18 kings and 4 queens travelled in order, oldest initially, each aboard a different vehicle embellished in ancient Egyptian design.
Both pedestrians and vehicles were disallowed from Tahrir Square, website of the present museum, and other areas of the path.
The mummified remains of Pharaoh Seqenenre Taa II, “the Brave”, who ruled over southern Egypt some 1,600 years before Christ, are the oldest of the 22 mummies being paraded through the streets of Cairo Egyptian Ministry of Antiquities/ –
Pictures of the slick parade and an equally carefully choreographed opening event were broadcast live on state television, to rousing music.
The mummies entered the premises of the brand-new museum to a 21-gun salute, after a somewhat shorter than anticipated journey time of around half an hour.
” This grandiose phenomenon is further evidence of the success … of an unique civilisation that extends into the depths of history,” said President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi simply ahead of proceedings.
The remains of four female pharaohs are among those being moved, consisting of the most effective, Queen Hatshepsut, who declared herself pharaoh after the death of her husband-brother Tuthmosis II AFP/ Cris BOURONCLE
Seqenenre Tao II, “the Brave”, who ruled over southern Egypt some 1,600 years prior to Christ, was on the first chariot, while Ramses IX, who reigned in the 12th century BC, brought up the rear.
Another great warrior, Ramses II, who ruled for 67 years, and Queen Hatshepsut, the most powerful female pharaoh, were likewise on the short voyage.
Mounted ritualistic cops stand in waiting along the parade route near the Egyptian Museum in Tahrir Square, in the capital Cairo on Saturday, ahead of the march of the mummies AFP/ Khaled DESOUKI
Emblazoned with the name of their designated sovereign, the gold and black coloured carriages were fitted with shock absorbers for the trip, to guarantee none of the valuable freights were inadvertently interrupted by unequal surface areas.
The carriage carrying the remains of Queen Ahmose-Nefertari, child of Pharaoh Seqenenre Tao II, advances as part of the parade of 22 ancient Egyptian royal mummies in Cairo Saturday AFP/ Khaled DESOUKI
Discovered near Luxor from 1881 onwards, interesting new information of the pharaohs’ lives– and deaths– are still emerging.
A high-tech study of Seqenenre Tao II, involving CT scans and 3D pictures of his hands and long-studied skull fractures, show he was likely eliminated in an execution event, after being recorded in battle.
Egypt continues to uncover ancient remains – – this photo from October 2020 shows the opening of a sarcophagus excavated by the Egyptian historical mission at the Saqqara necropolis near Cairo AFP/ Khaled DESOUKI
For their procession through Cairo’s streets, the mummies were placed in special containers filled with nitrogen, under conditions similar to their routine screen cases.
The new resting location, the National Museum of Egyptian Civilisation in the Fustat district of Old Cairo, includes smooth, low-rise buildings topped with a pyramid amid expansive premises.
The carriages carrying 22 ancient Egyptian royal mummies advance past the Obelisk of Ramses II along Tahrir Square as they depart from the Egyptian Museum to their brand-new home AFP/ Mahmoud KHALED
The mummies will go through 15 days of lab repair prior to they are showcased separately in their brand-new home, in an environment redolent of underground burial places.
They will be accompanied by a short biography.
In their new home, they will occupy “a little updated cases”, stated Salima Ikram, professor of Egyptology at the American University in Cairo.
Temperature level and humidity control will also be improved.
The “museum has what it requires to maintain (mummies), the very best laboratories … it is one of the very best museums we have,” Waleed el-Batoutti, consultant to the tourist and antiquities ministry, informed state television.
The National Museum of Egyptian Civilisation opened its doors to limited exhibitions from 2017 and will open totally on Sunday, prior to the mummies go on display to the public two weeks later on.
In the coming months, the country is due to inaugurate another brand-new showcase, the Grand Egyptian Museum, near the Giza pyramids.
It too will house pharaonic collections, including the well known treasure of Tutankhamun.
Discovered in 1922, the tomb of the young ruler, who took the throne briefly in the 14th century BC, included treasures consisting of gold and ivory.
A so-called “curse of the pharaoh” emerged in the wake of Tutankhamun’s uncovering in 1922-23.
A crucial funder of the dig, Lord Carnarvon, passed away of blood poisoning months after the burial place was opened, while an early visitor similarly died quickly in 1923.
With the parade coming just days after a number of disasters struck Egypt, some inevitably hypothesized on social networks about a brand-new curse provoked by the most current move.
The past days have seen a lethal rail collision and a structure collapse in Cairo, while international headings were controlled by the battle to refloat the giant container ship MV Ever Given which obstructed the Suez Canal for almost a week.
The mummies’ re-housing “marks completion of much work to enhance their preservation and exhibition,” said UNESCO Director-General Audrey Azoulay, who remained in Cairo for the parade.
” This raises emotions that go much further than the simple moving of a collection– we will see the history of Egyptian civilisation unfold prior to our eyes.”