The embalming ritual of late period through Ptolemaic Egypt

Chapman, Sarah Lynn (2017). The embalming ritual of late period through Ptolemaic Egypt. University of Birmingham. Ph.D.

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This thesis explores the embalming ritual of the Egyptian Late Period through Ptolemaic era (664 – 30 BC). Using an interdisciplinary approach, I incorporate primary and secondary texts, Egyptian funerary art and archaeological remains into my study. I utilize these lines of evidence to reconstruct the embalming ritual to the degree possible and analyze the ways in which its various stages were believed to fulfill the ultimate goal of this rite: preservation of the physical body and eternal life for the deceased. I focus particularly on the archaeological material and explore the visibility of religious practice in the archaeological record. I identify key changes and developments in the embalming ritual from the Late Period through the Ptolemaic Period in order to highlight religious significance placed on embalming during this time period. Funerary art, literature, and archaeological material of the Late through Greco-Roman Periods illustrate an increased focus on the integrity of the corpse as well as the manifestation of decay, the liquid \(rDw\). I examine these ancient sources in order to better understand the nature and development of body-centered funerary practices during this period of Egyptian history.

Type of Work: Thesis (Doctorates > Ph.D.)
Award Type: Doctorates > Ph.D.
College/Faculty: Colleges (2008 onwards) > College of Arts & Law
School or Department: School of History and Cultures, Department of Classics, Ancient History and Archaeology (CAHA)
Funders: None/not applicable
Subjects: D History General and Old World > DE The Mediterranean Region. The Greco-Roman World
D History General and Old World > DT Africa
G Geography. Anthropology. Recreation > GT Manners and customs


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