Salima Ikram Lecture on Animal Mummies – Bowers Musuem, California, April 8
Egyptology professor and AUC Press author Salima Ikram is giving a lecture on “Manufacturing Divinities: Creating Animal Mummies in Ancient Egypt” at the Bowers Museum in California on April 8, an event co-sponsored by the American Research Center in Egypt.
She will talk about the different types of animal mummies (food, pets, votive offerings, sacred creatures, and ‘other’) and explain how and why they were made. Ikram will also discuss experimental archaeology, and raise the socio- economic as well as religious implications of animal mummies.
Her lecture will be followed by a book signing.
Ikram is the editor of Divine Creatures: Animal Mummies in Ancient Egypt (AUC Press 2005), and co-author of The Mummy in Ancient Egypt (AUC Press, 1998) and The Tomb in Ancient Egypt (AUC Press, 2008). She is also a Scientific Consultant for the AUC Press Nature Foldouts. The foldouts as well as Salima’s books are available in the Bowers Museum Gift Store and online.
This special event takes place in conjunction with the ongoing exhibition “Animal Mummies: Soulful Creatures in Ancient Egypt” being held at the Bowers Museum until 15 June 2014. Drawn from the renowned collections of the Brooklyn Museum, the exhibition features choice examples from among the many millions of mummies of birds, cats, dogs, snakes, and other animals preserved from at least thirty-one different cemeteries throughout Egypt. “Animal Mummies” is the first major exhibition to focus on this aspect of ancient Egyptian culture and religion.
In a video made by Heritage Key, Salim Ikram explains how animal mummies were made. “Animals were mummified in a variety of ways,” explains Ikram, associate professor of Egyptology at the American University in Cairo. “Basically what mummification does is to desiccate the body so you can be preserved for eternity; the basic thing to do then would be, if it is a large animal, to remove the internal organs and to dry out the body.”