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Hawk Mummy

Egyptian, Classical, Ancient Near Eastern Art

The hawk mummy, with an elaborate pattern of dyed and undyed linen, comes from the Egypt Exploration Fund excavations in Abydos in 1913. The brown dye was made from iron-bearing clay. This pattern and dying technique help identify other animal mummies as being from this site.

The falcon mummy, with undyed linen wrapped in concentric circles around it, has no known burial site. Scholars hope eventually to be able to identify the site or sites where this second wrapping technique was used, revealing more about this mummy than is currently known.
MEDIUM Animal remains (Common Kestrel, genus Falco), linen, wood
  • Place Made: Egypt
  • DATES 664-30 B.C.E.
    DYNASTY Dynasty 26, or later
    PERIOD Late Period to Ptolemaic Period
    DIMENSIONS 4 1/4 x 3 x 16 3/4 in. (10.8 x 7.6 x 42.5 cm)  (show scale)
    MUSEUM LOCATION This item is not on view
    ACCESSION NUMBER 37.2042.3E
    CREDIT LINE Charles Edwin Wilbour Fund
    RIGHTS STATEMENT Creative Commons-BY
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    CAPTION Hawk Mummy, 664-30 B.C.E. Animal remains (Common Kestrel, genus Falco), linen, wood, 4 1/4 x 3 x 16 3/4 in. (10.8 x 7.6 x 42.5 cm). Brooklyn Museum, Charles Edwin Wilbour Fund, 37.2042.3E. Creative Commons-BY (Photo: Brooklyn Museum (Gavin Ashworth,er), 37.2042.3E_Gavin_Ashworth_photograph.jpg)
    IMAGE overall, 37.2042.3E_Gavin_Ashworth_photograph.jpg. Brooklyn Museum photograph (Gavin Ashworth, photographer), 2012
    "CUR" at the beginning of an image file name means that the image was created by a curatorial staff member. These study images may be digital point-and-shoot photographs, when we don\'t yet have high-quality studio photography, or they may be scans of older negatives, slides, or photographic prints, providing historical documentation of the object.
    CATALOGUE DESCRIPTION Small hawk mummy wrapped in a coarse weave linen. The linen bundle is then wound with threading; the body is wound in a systematic pattern across the body, while at the lower end, the thread is laced up and down the length of the body in a zigzag pattern. A thread is also wound around the base of the head repeatedly. Condition: The threading across the widest part of the body is missing, its indentations are still visible. There are a few holes at the widest part of the body. A portion of an old sticker still remains.
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