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6352 Assignment 5; Mummification

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Pick one of the artifacts of decomposition we have discussed thus far this semester; research and discuss – in no less than 1,500 words – the scientific research that has been conducted on the subject including landmark discoveries and advances


6352 Assignment 5; Mummification


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6352 Assignment 5

Mummification is an artificial approach to preserving the human body and was discovered through the art of hieroglyphics. In simple terms, it involves removing all moisture content from a deceased person's flesh through desiccation and adding preservatives like wine and resin. Otzi, the iceman found in the Italian Alps in 1991, is one of the world's most extraordinary naturally preserved mummies (Rollo et al., 2002). Mummification is a concept that runs across generations and has a significant impact on modern-day forensic practices. In the traditional context, for example, Egyptian belief systems conducted several funerary practices to aid in immortalizing people after death. On the other hand, the forensic scene focuses on achieving an accurate forensic pathology on human remains.

Mummies can also be formed naturally when human remains are exposed to superficial temperatures, dry climates, or other conditions that deter human body decay. Some of the oldest mummies in North America were discovered in Spirit Cave, formed through the natural mummification process. According to Rollo et al. (2002), the mummy was wrapped in a tule mat and positioned under a cave with rarefied air and an extremely dry temperature.

The funerary practices of “mummification” with “mummification” in a forensic context compare and contrast in many ways. In the funerary practices, the process entails removing the brain, entire abdomen, and other internal organs. To remove the brain, the traditional approach utilized curved metal through nostril embedment, and other internal organs of a body were removed through an incision. Voids left from removed organs were filled with spices like myrrh, cassia, and other aromatic spices to rebuild the body to the near-normal shape of human flesh. The Egyptians, for example, believed the heart was the most crucial aspect of the person because it contained the intellect (Brookes, 1993).


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