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Animal Mummification Process

Mummification - Beliefs

Animals were treated much the same during the Embalming Process and for the same reasons: meaning that an Egyptian’s Pet could join them in the Afterlife; or that the deceased Animal took on the form of the Deity it represented and could be used by the living or the deceased as an intermediary in their journey through life or on their journey to the afterlife. For more information about the Embalming Process, click here.

 

Many of the mummified animals that are continuing to be discovered have their own grave sites and as such, these are thought to have been revered in their death as much as humans were, therefore, they were treated in a similar fashion

Mummified Falcon

Mummified Cat

Mummified Crocodile

Mummified Cat

Mummified Crocodile

Animal Mummy Graves

Mummified Animals found by Egyptologists have been:

  • Cats
  • Ibex
  • Gazelles
  • Baboons
  • Dogs
  • Cows
  • Lions
  • Apis Bulls
  • Falcons
  • Hippos
  • Crocodiles

Mass graves of what are considered to be Votive Offerings of animals are often found, and are continuing to be located, besides Temple sites in Egypt. Such as Kom Ombo Temple, North Aswan where 300+ mummified Crocodiles were located next to Sobek’s Temple; God Sobek’s animal form was a Crocodile. There is some understanding the Crocodiles may well have been living as deified forms of the God Sobek within the Temple itself and were then mummified on the Temple’s behalf

Animal Mummies with no Mummies?

 

  • There are estimates that Animal Mummies may number more than 75 million which seems a ridiculously high number until you learn that 8 million preserved Dogs were found at one site alone
  • The majority of the mummified animals contain the whole or at least part of the animal that they are mummified to represent, but recently Egyptologists have discovered Mummified remains which contain only sticks or some feathers
  • The reasoning behind this could be for fraudulent purposes committed by the Embalmers, although Anthropologists have proposed that these could have been provided as a cheaper alternative for mummies intended to be used as Votive offerings which logically would consume less animals and still be a formative offering to the intended Deity and Temple
  • Especially those which contained small statuette images of the Deity in their human or animal form which have been located inside the animal mummies which seem to have been used for Votive offerings