A Multidisciplinary Study of Egyptian Mummies from the Pushkin State Museum of Fine Arts (Methodical Aspects)
A Multidisciplinary Study of Egyptian Mummies
from the Pushkin State Museum of Fine Arts (Methodical Aspects)
E.B. Yatsishina1, S.V. Vasilyev2, S.B. Borutskaya3, A.S. Nikitin4, S.A. Nikitin5, R.M. Galeev2, S.I. Kartashov1, V.L. Ushakov1, O.A. Vasilieva6, O.P. Dyuzheva6, M.M. Novikov7, and I.A. Chichaev1 1National Research Center “Kurchatov Institute”, Pl. Akademika Kurchatova 1, Moscow, 123182, Russia 2Institute of Ethnology and Anthropology, Russian Academy of Sciences, Leninsky pr. 32a, Moscow, 119334, Russia 3Lomonosov Moscow State University, Leninskie Gory 1, bldg. 12, Moscow, 119234, Russia 4Evdokimov Moscow State University of Medicine and Dentistry, Kuskovskaya, prop. 1A, bldg. 4, Moscow, 111398, Russia 5Bureau of Forensic Medical Expertise, Moscow Health Department, Tarny proezd 3, Moscow, 115516, Russia 6Pushkin State Museum of Fine Arts, Volkhonka 12, Moscow, 119019, Russia 7Federal Scientifi c Research Centre “Crystallography and Photonics”, Russian Academy of Sciences, Svyatoozerskaya 1, Shatura, 140700, Russia
We present the results of a multidisciplinary study (the first one in Russia) of nine Egyptian mummies owned by the Pushkin State Museum of Fine Arts (Moscow), carried out at the Kurchatov Institute. A detailed description of the methods is provided. X-ray computed tomography is shown to be a highly informative non-destructive technique for studying the structures of mummies. On the basis of the results, plus the conclusions of forensic experts, a detailed anthropological analysis was conducted. Mummification techniques, sex, and age of all individuals were assessed. In three cases, the sex differed from that indicated in the museum inventory. Morphologically, all crania represent varieties of the Mediterranean type. One individual, however, has typically sub-Saharan features. Pathological changes concern mostly the spine and are both age-related and traumatic. In two individuals, spinal pathologies might have caused death.