Egypt “digitally unpacked” the mummy of the famous Pharaoh Amenhotep I, revealing its secrets for the first time since its discovery in 1881 without disturbing his burial mask.
Thanks to the advanced 3D digital imagery, researchers discovered new mummification techniques that were used for the pharaoh, who ruled more than 1,500 BC.
The research was led by Sahar Saleem, professor of radiology at Cairo University, and renowned Egyptologist Zahi Hawass, a former minister of antiquities, the Ministry of Tourism and Antiques said in a statement on Tuesday.
“Saleem and Hawass used advanced X-ray technology, CT (computed tomography) scans, and advanced computer software programs to digitally unzip Amenhotep I’s mummy in a safe, non-invasive method without touching the mummy,” it said.
“The Egyptian study revealed for the first time the face of King Amenhotep I, his age, his state of health and many secrets about the unique mummification and reburial of the mummy.”
Analysis revealed that Amenhotep I was the first pharaoh to be mummified with his arms folded and the last to have his brain not removed from his skull.
The tomography revealed that the pharaoh, who led several military campaigns during his 21-year reign, appeared to have died of an injury or illness by the age of 35.
The mummy discovered in Luxor, southern Egypt, is the only one whose tight ligaments have not been unrolled by archaeologists to preserve the mask and the garlands of flowers that surround it like hair.
The same “technical unpacking” method as described by Saleem revealed the “harem conspiracy” in which Ramses III. born of a rival.