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ABC Brisbane reports that missing fragments of the Egyptian Book of the Dead have been discovered stored in a Queensland museum:

World-renowned Egyptologist Dr John Taylor was viewing the museum’s Egyptian collection when a name on a papyrus fragment caught his eye.

Dr Taylor is the curator of the British Museum’s mummy collection. The British Museum currently has a mummy exhibition on display at the Queensland Museum.

He was taken to the museum’s storeroom to see more and says what came next is a once-in-a-lifetime discovery.

“After a very short time it became apparent that we did indeed have many fragments of the Book of the Dead,” he said.

Dr Taylor says the rare specimens belonged to a high priest of the Temple of Amun, around 3,400 years ago.

“This is not the papyrus of just anybody, this is one of the top officials from Egypt at the peak of ancient Egypt’s prosperity,” he said.

“So it is a significant find, and if we can reconstruct the whole document that’s going to tell us a lot.

12 Comments CherryPie on Apr 25th 2012

12 Responses to “The Egyptian Book of the Dead”

  1. I read that story and it is good news. I really enjoyed the British Museum exhibition on the book of the dead last year.

  2. Marcie says:

    Fascinating!!! What an interesting piece…

  3. It’s quite amazing that finds like this can still suddenly appear. I have always been interested in the ancient Egyptians – a fascinating culture.

    • CherryPie says:

      The Egyptian culture is quite fascinating :-)

      The find is quite amazing and I am looking forward to the piecing together of the fragments :-)

  4. Claude says:

    The destruction of the Royal Library of Alexandria by ignorant Barbarians was such a loss. Just imagine what we would have learned when such a small fragment of one book is so important.

  5. james higham says:

    I’m a bit suspicious about all these sudden discoveries of late. There’s every reason for these stunning discoveries to be made and then it tells us something against what we’ve been believing for eons. And how could something so significant be lost in a museum of all places? If you saw such a thing in a storeroom, you wouldn’t just think it was another bit of paper.

    • CherryPie says:

      I keep an open mind, these sort of things, they have always turned up and do challenge current view points. I note that this is just an archaeological finding at the moment, it is a long way off from any analysis of the text…

      Traditionalists will always believe what they have been taught…

      Free thinkers will always keep an open mind and re-evaluate what they have been taught…

      Museum storerooms contain vast amounts of artefacts which were just collected or were trophies prizes from an expedition in another country. A lot of it hasn’t been looked at, let alone catalogued, analysed or identified.

      On the other hand there are some things in museum storerooms that have been buried there for political or other reasons. Supposedly in the best interests of the general public!

  6. Mickie Brown says:

    I have always been fascinated with Egyptian history. I would love to see the Pyramids some day. I liked your reply to James’ comment–you had some very good points. Have a nice weekend–hope the weather there is as nice as it is here. Mickie :)

    • CherryPie says:

      I too would love to see the Pyramids and thank you for your kind words.

      I hope you have a great weekend too. It was a little overcast today, but the rain held off :-)