Mummies

A group of Chinchorro mummies, dated between 5000 B.C.E. and 3000 B.C.E.

Cool Finds

Can the World's Oldest Mummies Survive Climate Change and Other Threats in the Coming Decades?

Up to 7,000 years old, the mummified remains are treasured by local residents

British archaeologist Howard Carter and a crew of 60 Egyptian men and children discovered the tomb of King Tutankhamun in 1922.

Remembering the Unsung Egyptians Who Helped Discover King Tut's Tomb

A exhibition celebrates the 100th anniversary of the archaeological find by spotlighting the overlooked workers who made it possible

Archaeologist Carol Anne Barsody scans the mummified ibis to create a 3-D model of it for an upcoming exhibition.

Mislabeled for a Century, Mysterious Mummy Reclassified as Sacred Ibis

Previously identified as a hawk, the bird was one of millions killed as offerings to the ancient Egyptian god Thoth

An illustration of a mummification experiment shows a bound body's breakdown of soft tissue after three weeks, and after seven months.

Researchers Find Potential Evidence of Oldest-Known Mummification

Newly discovered photographs help researchers to re-analyze 8,000-year-old remains from burials in Portugal

French culture minister officials visits the site of the discovery where an ancient human-shaped sarcophogus was found, among other objects, including sculptures, carvings and a 13th-century altar screen. 

Cool Finds

Notre-Dame Repair Crews Discover an Ancient Graveyard With a Sealed Sarcophagus

France’s culture ministry describes the finding as being “of remarkable scientific quality”

The largest cache of embalming vessels discovered in Egypt included pots containing resins, oils and myrrh.

These Ancient Egyptian Artifacts Reveal New Details on the Mummification Process

Archaeologists discover a large cache of ceramic pots from the sixth century B.C.E. containing resins, oils and myrrh used for embalming

The mummified remains of eight children, who may have been sacrificed, was found near the tomb of an elite individual of pre-Incan society.

Cool Finds

Eight Mummified Children Found in Peru May Have Been Sacrificed in an Ancient Funeral Ritual

The remains were discovered in the tomb of an elite member of a pre-Inca city buried 1,200 years ago

Scientists examine the first-known pregnant Egyptian mummy.

New Research

What Preserved This Pregnant Egyptian Mummy's Fetus for Millennia?

The combined effects of decomposition and embalming basically "pickled" the fetus, sealing it in its mother's womb

The head of one of the large sphinxes discovered in the funerary complex for Amenhotep III.

Cool Finds

Two Sphinxes Depicting King Tut's Grandfather Discovered in Egypt

Archaeologists are restoring the huge stone statues found half-submerged in water at the burial site of Egyptian pharaoh Amenhotep III

Ancient meets ultramodern in “Ramses the Great and the Gold of the Pharaohs,” now on view in Houston.

An Immersive Celebration of Ramses II Transports Visitors to Ancient Egypt

Historic artifacts meet 21st-century technology in a blockbuster touring exhibition centered on the 19th-Dynasty pharaoh

The catacombs contain the bodies of 1,284 people, including 163 children.

Researchers Are Using X-Rays to Solve the Mystery Behind Sicily's Child Mummies

The bodies were preserved and put on display at the Catacombs of Palermo between 1787 and 1880, and have yet to be identified

Centuries after Amenhotep's death, 21st-Dynasty priests reburied his mummy to protect it from grave robbers.

Innovation for Good

Researchers Digitally Unwrap Egyptian Pharaoh's 3,500-Year-Old Mummy

Scanning technology revealed new insights on Amenhotep I's life

A roughly 2000-year-old mummified man of the Ansilta culture, from the Andes of San Juan, Argentina, had lice eggs and cement in his hair which preserved his own DNA

DNA Preserved in Lice Glue Reveals South American Mummies' Secrets

Remarkable samples from an ancient culture offer scientists a promising new way to study the past

The sealed tomb held about 400 funerary figurines.

Cool Finds

Mummies With Gold Tongues Found Inside 2,500-Year-Old Tombs in Egypt

The rare discovery of a sealed tomb yielded well-preserved grave goods including 400 funerary figures

Researchers have yet to confirm the mummy's gender but say the deceased was likely a man who died between the ages of 25 and 30.

Archaeologists Unearth 800-Year-Old Mummy in Peru

Scholars are studying the remains in hopes of learning more about the Indigenous peoples who lived in the region prior to the rise of the Inca Empire

The tomb was decorated with colorful painted scenes.

Cool Finds

Tomb of Ramses II's Treasurer Unearthed at Saqqara Necropolis

Carved scenes in the grave depict the life of Ptah-M-Wia, an important figure in the 19th-Dynasty pharaoh's government

The naturally mummified remains were remarkably well preserved, with some still sporting clothing and hair.

Cool Finds

New Research Reveals Surprising Origins of Millennia-Old Mummies Found in China

Once thought to be migrants from West Asia, the deceased were actually direct descendants of a local Ice Age population, DNA analysis suggests

Researchers discovered Khuwy's richly painted tomb in 2019.

Cool Finds

Richly Adorned Egyptian Tomb Could Rewrite the History of Mummification

A new analysis of a Fifth-Dynasty official's mummy suggests sophisticated embalming techniques are 1,000 years older than previously believed

Scientists used DNA analysis of mummies from ancient Egypt to reconstruct the faces of three men buried more than 2,000 years ago.

Art Meets Science

3-D Reconstruction Reveals the Faces of Three Ancient Egyptian Mummies

Researchers used a combination of DNA and physical analysis to approximate the trio's visages

Cardiovascular disease is the leading cause of death for captive apes.

Ask Smithsonian

How Do Gorillas Get Heart Disease? And More Questions From Our Readers

You've got questions. We've got experts

loading icon