The utilisation of modern forensic imaging in the investigation of Graeco- Roman child mummies

Janet Davey, John T. Taylor, Olaf H. Drummer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Modern medical technologies, including computerised tomography (CT) scanning, have provided the tools to examine the bodies of ancient mummified children. This study of 14 Graeco-Roman child mummies has offered an opportunity to investigate, for the first time, a corpus of remains that adds information to a field of investigation not previously recorded in such detail. The mummies have revealed preservation methods, as described by Herodotus, that have maintained the physical integrity of the bodies and shown evidence of a variety of mummification methods, from the most simple to the most elaborate. Inclusions have been identified that ranged from unidentified matter, linen, jewellery to organ packages. A wide range of peri-mortem and post-mortem injuries was observed, and in particular one injury, relating to the post-mortem positioning of the head, which may be used to assist with the identification of Graeco-Roman child mummies. The study demonstrated the value of revisiting investigations of ancient human remains through the application of modern forensic radiology techniques.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)195-208
Number of pages14
JournalJournal of Egyptian Archaeology
Volume100
Publication statusPublished - 2014

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