Archeologists Find Out Pharaoh Amenhotep I Was Circumcised
Of all the mummies that were found in the 19th and 20th centuries, only one was never opened for research purposes – the mummy of Egyptian pharaoh Amenhotep I. The researchers simply did not dare to touch a mummy that had been so perfectly preserved, with its array of decorations and its delicate and colorful face mask.
Photo Insert: Pharaoh Amenhotep I
Now, the researchers have gotten their first look inside – without even opening it. The shroud was digitally opened using a 3-D CT scan. On Monday, the Egyptian researchers reported their findings in the journal Frontiers in Medicine, Gidon Lev reported for the Israeli newspaper Haaretz.
The first time that this mummy was opened was in the 11th century BCE, 400 years after the pharaoh’s death by priests who restored and reburied mummies from ancient dynasties that tomb robbers had damaged. Researchers found that he looked like his father - both of whom had a narrow nose and chin, curly hair, and protruding upper teeth.
The leading authors of the study of the mummy, Dr. Sahar Saleem, professor of radiology at the Faculty of Medicine at Cairo University, and the archaeologist Dr. Zahi Hawass, said the fact that the mummy had not been opened in modern times provided a unique research opportunity.
They discovered that the pharaoh was about 35 years old at the time of his death and was 1.69 centimeters (5 feet 6.5 inches) tall. He had been circumcised and his teeth were in good condition. His inner organs, other than his brain and heart, had been removed by his embalmers.
The researchers found no sign of injury or illness that would indicate the cause of the pharaoh’s death.