Researchers from Harvard University took part in a project to create a digital image of the sarcophagus in which the body of the Egyptian priest Ankh-Khonsu rested, as well as two other coffins.
The priest's mummy was removed from the sarcophagus over a hundred years ago and transported from Egypt to Cambridge, but the coffin itself was only reopened 30 years ago. Two other sarcophagi belonged to the singer of the temple Mut-Iy-Iy and the priest and engraver on metal Pa-Di-Mut. All three coffins date from Dynasty XXII (945-712 BC) and arrived at the Harvard Museum from modern Thebes.
Researchers collected samples of fabric, paint and resin, and examined texts and iconography on the surface of wood and packaging material made of layers of papyrus or linen covered with plaster. A three-dimensional scan of the sarcophagi was also carried out to create computer models.
Kris Snibbe / Harvard Staff Photographer
The image of the deity was hidden under a layer of resinous material that was used for burial. In addition, scientists discovered drawings made in yellow, orange and blue, and several hieroglyphs that translate as "Ra-Horakhte, the great God, Lord of Heaven."