What animals did Egypt mummify?
Ancient Egyptians mummified their human dead to ensure their rebirth in the afterlife. Human mummification is known throughout the Pharaonic period. In addition to humans, animals were mummified, including cats, ibis, hawks, snakes, crocodiles and dogs.
What animals were mummified in ancient Egypt and why?
Long before animal mummies were used as religious offerings, animals in Egypt were occasionally mummified for a more personal reason—as beloved pets that were to keep the deceased company in the afterlife. The most common Egyptian pets included cats, dogs, mongooses, monkeys, gazelles, and birds.
What was the most mummified animal?
This bronze coffin dating to between 664 and 30 B.C. held an ibis bundle, the most common type of animal mummy in ancient Egypt. This wooden coffin held a complete mummified cat, an animal that became popular as a domestic pet in the first millennium B.C. and was associated with the goddess Bastet.
How did Egyptians mummify pets?
Taylor said in many cases animal mummies appear to have been smeared or dunked in some kind of resin and oil before being wrapped—a process far less complicated than that observed in human mummies. He said the vast majority of these animals were mummified because of their link with ancient Egyptian gods.
Was killing cats illegal in Egypt?
While only esteemed Egyptians were able to have cats as pets, it was illegal for anyone, including royalty, to injure, harm, or kill a cat.
How many animals were mummified in ancient Egypt?
70 million animals
The Ancient Egyptians didn’t just mummify their dead human ancestors, they also mummified animals – in their millions. It’s possible up to 70 million animals were mummified and then buried in underground catacombs at over thirty sites across Egypt.
What is a mummified cat called?
Cats were depicted in association with the name of Bastet. They contained vast numbers of cat mummies and cat statues that are exhibited in museum collections worldwide. Among the mummified animals excavated in Gizeh, the African wildcat (Felis lybica) is the most common cat followed by the jungle cat (Felis chaus).
Why were cats mummified in Egypt?
In ancient Egypt, cats were sacred animals. Cats were also pets, just like they are today, and were sometimes mummified and placed in tombs with their owners. The belief was that by placing cats and their owners in the same tomb the pair could remain together in the Afterlife.
What did the Egyptians do with animals?
Ancient Egyptians would leave mummified animals (both real and fake) and statuettes as offerings to the cult of the god. These represented the species being offered to (in this instance, the cat), in an attempt to appease the god and seek their favour.
What was the punishment for hurting a cat in Egypt?
It is clearly established that, by 450 BCE, the penalty in Egypt for killing a cat was death (though this law is thought to have been observed much earlier). The goddess Bastet, commonly depicted as a cat or as a woman with a cat’s head, was among the most popular deities of the Egyptian pantheon.
Are cats demi gods?
1. All Hail the Cat. In Ancient Egypt, cats were often considered magical creatures who brought good luck to the people they lived with. They were closely associated with many of the gods and goddesses Egyptians worshipped, and were thought to have even been considered demigods.
Did the Egyptians worship cats?
But Egyptians did not worship felines. Rather, they believed these ‘feline’ deities shared certain character traits with the animals. Bastet is probably the best-known feline goddess from Egypt. Initially depicted as a lioness, Bastet assumed the image of a cat or a feline-headed woman in the 2nd millennium BCE.
Who are some famous mummies in Egypt?
Tutankhamun. Pharaoh Tutankhamun.
What is the sacred animal of Egypt?
Sacred Animals of Ancient Egypt By Austen McDonald. Jackals. One of the most important gods, Anubis, god of mummification and afterlife, is depicted as a jackal. Jackals were originally thought to be small wolves , as written by European Aristotle.
Who is the Egyptian god of animals?
In Egyptian mythology, Amon-Re, or just Amon, was the king of all other Egyptian gods, and the creator/god of life and fertility. Even though a goose sometimes symbolizes Amon, the main animal associated with Amon is the ram, or a criosphinx , which is a sphinx with a ram head.
Who were the mummies of Egypt?
Ancient Egyptian Mummies. The tombs of the pharaohs such as Amenhotep II, Thutmose III, Thutmose IV, Tutankhamen, Seti I and Ramses II reveal the importance of the pharaohs of ancient Egypt. The pharaohs were considered as Gods on earth. Hence, the rituals and process of mummification was different compared to that of an ordinary man.