Ancient Mummy found in cardboard box by cleaners in Peru
Workers cleaning in Peru discovered a mysterious mummy inside a cardboard box outside an archaeological site.
The mummy was found Tuesday morning in a fetal position, tied with a rope, in a cardboard box near trash outside an archaeological site in the Pre-Incan city of Chan Chan.
“[The cleaners] thought it was rubbish and put it in the compactor but one cleaner opened it up and discovered it was a mummy,” said David Carrasco, municipal security at Huanchaco District, according to Reuters.
If it wasn’t for the one cleaner, it’s very possible the ancient discovery would have been thrown out for good. Read more.
In the late 1980’s, perfectly preserved 4000-year-old mummies began appearing in a remote Chinese desert. They had long reddish-blond hair, European features and didn’t appear to be the ancestors of modern-day Chinese people. Archaeologists now think they may have been the citizens of an ancient civilization that existed at the crossroads between China and Europe.
One of the most famous of the mummies is the “Beauty of Loulan”. Her alluring, reconstructed face is shown on the right. The Beauty died around age 40 and was buried dressed in shades of brown with a basket full of wheat.
Before the golden masks of Egyptian
royal mummies became popular, an image of the deceased was rendered in simpler
media. As early as the fourth dynasty (circa 2625 B.C.E), thin layers of
plaster placed directly over the head, or on the linen strips covering the
corpse, solidified into a plaster “mask” with the likeness of the deceased.
Only a few such masks are known today. The Brooklyn Museum owns one of them and
we are very glad to be able to show it to our visitors. Dated to Dynasty
5 or 6 (circa 2500-2170 B.C.E.), our plaster mask is now on display in its own
case in the Mummy Chamber.
You can read more about it and
about the complex process of conserving this delicate object here.