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Corn Mummy

Egyptian, Classical, Ancient Near Eastern Art

On View: Morris A. and Meyer Schapiro Gallery, 4th Floor
During annual rituals honoring Osiris, the ancient Egyptians fashioned small “mummies” from a mixture of clay, sand, and grains of corn. These “mummies” were wrapped in layers of bandages and placed in coffins decorated with images of the falcon god Sokar. The Egyptians considered corn a living element of a natural cycle embodying the concept of resurrection and renewal. This concept was crucial to the worship of Osiris, who died and was resurrected as lord of the dead.
MEDIUM Wood, clay, sand, corn, linen
DATES 332 B.C.E.-150 C.E.
PERIOD Ptolemaic Period to early Roman Period
DIMENSIONS 5 3/4 x 6 7/8 x 19 11/16 in. (14.6 x 17.5 x 50 cm)  (show scale)
INSCRIPTIONS (1) Hail, Sokar-Osiris, Greetings Re-Hor-Akhty and Khepri who created himself. How beautiful is your rising on the horizon (2) when you illuminate the two lands with your rays! (All) the gods rejoice when they see Horus, King of The Sky, the Wnwt-cobra on your head, (3) the Crown of Upper Egypt and the Crown of Lower Egypt on your brow. (4) They have made their seat, while Thoth abides on the prow (of the sun boat.) (5) Thoth abides in order to see the beauty of this, your image. I have come before you and I am with you. * Text on Corn Mummy translated by Edward Bleiberg and Paul O'Rourke
MUSEUM LOCATION This item is on view in Morris A. and Meyer Schapiro Gallery, 4th Floor
CREDIT LINE Gift of Caren Golden in memory of Eleanor L. Golden
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CAPTION Corn Mummy, 332 B.C.E.-150 C.E. Wood, clay, sand, corn, linen, 5 3/4 x 6 7/8 x 19 11/16 in. (14.6 x 17.5 x 50 cm). Brooklyn Museum, Gift of Caren Golden in memory of Eleanor L. Golden, 2007.1a-c. Creative Commons-BY (Photo: Brooklyn Museum (Gavin Ashworth,er), 2007.1a-c_Gavin_Ashworth_photograph.jpg)
IMAGE overall, 2007.1a-c_Gavin_Ashworth_photograph.jpg. Brooklyn Museum photograph (Gavin Ashworth, photographer), 2012
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