The world’s first pregnant Egyptian mummy has been discovered by Polish scientists.
The mummy was previously thought to be a male priest but scans reveal it was a woman between 20 and 30 years old and in her late pregnancy when died 2,000 years ago.
Scientists suggest the woman was of ‘high social standing’ due to the careful way in which she was embalmed and the amulets that were wrapped with the body.
“radiological examination of our mummy, has proved it is the body of a pregnant woman. she came from the elite of the banned community and was carefully mummified, wrapped in fabrics, and equipped with a rich set of amulets,” said the warsaw mummy project team on Twitter.
The pregnant woman was previously mistaken for a male priest called hor-djehuty. it wasn’t until the mummy was examined under CT scans and x-ray that the truth was revealed.
“Our first surprise was that it has no penis, but instead it has breasts and long hair, and then we found out that it’s a pregnant woman,” anthropologist and archeologist Marzena Ozark-Szilke told the associated press.
“When we saw the little foot and then the little hand (of the fetus), we were really shocked.”
The research team has dubbed the women ‘the mysterious lady’ as there are still some unresolved mysteries regarding who she was and where exactly she came from.
However, the amazing find of the world’s first pregnant Egyptian mummy does shed new light on pregnancy in ancient times, burial customs, and ancient Egyptian religion.