Archaeologists discovered gold-tongued Egyptian mummies.

Helen Dunmore
A 2,000-year-old mummy with a golden tongue found in Alexandria, Egypt.
Golden tongued mummy found in egypt

Experts said that the tongue, found in a temple on the outskirts of Alexandria, Egypt, was possibly intended to help the dead speak in the afterlife.

Two centuries ago, in the Taposiris Magna Temple outside Alexandria, the ancient Egyptians were laid to rest. They had their organs removed, and they covered their bodies in cloth.

They granted a great honor to one mummy: priests and embalmers put in his mouth a gold amulet shaped like a tongue so that the dead could communicate in the afterlife with gods like Osiris, the lord of the Egyptian underworld.

Among countless others recently discovered in Alexandria, the Egyptian Ministry of Tourism and Antiquities declared Friday, was the golden-tongued mummy.

Sixteen burial shafts carved from the rock under the temple have been discovered by a joint expedition of Egyptian and Dominican archaeologists.

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Ancient mummies with golden tongued have been discovered by archaeologists working at a burial site in Egypt.

The team, led by Kathleen Martinez of the Dominican Republic University of Santo Domingo, worked at the Taposiris Magna Temple in western Alexandria when they found 16 burial shafts dating from the Greek and Roman periods.

According to a Facebook post by Egypt’s Ministry of Tourism and Antiquities, several “mummies in a poor state of preservation” were found inside the shafts.

The archaeologists found “remnants of gilded cartonnage” — a case made of tightly fitted layers of linen or papyrus glued together — the ministry said, as well as “amulets of gold foil in the form of a tongue that was placed in the mummy’s mouth.” They believe this was a special rite to ensure that the dead in the afterlife could speak to the court of the god Osiris.

Golden Tongued mummy was not the only star of the discovery.

Egyptian mummy covered
Egyptian mummy

They buried two of the most valuable mummies discovered by the party with decorative cartonnage, a substance made of papyrus and linen that Egyptians used to encase mummies head to toe, according to Dominican archaeologist Kathleen Martínez, who led the expedition.

One mummy’s cartonnage portrayed Osiris. Simultaneously, the other is adorned with a crown of horns, a cobra snake on her forehead, and a falcon-head necklace symbolizing Horus, the god of the Egyptian sun.

Partial scrolls were also entombed with the two mummies, which are now being deciphered.

Diggers discovered another mummy with eye holes wearing a death mask; death masks helped direct the deceased’s souls back to their bodies and shielded the dead in the afterlife.

Khaled Abo El Hamd, director-general of the Antiquities Ministry of Alexandria, announced that eight marble heads dating back to the Greek and Roman periods were also discovered by the expedition.

The heads, which they may have buried in the temple, were sculpted to resemble their owners.

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