Remains of Egyptian Kings and Myth by by Robert Morkot Essays

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“Divine of Body: The Remains of Egyptian Kings” was written by Robert Morkot, a lecturer in Archeology at the University of Exeter, and was published in Past and Present in 2010. In this article, Morkot argues that the Egyptian practice of mummification was not related to the western principle of relic-collection and that the remains of rulers weren't worshiped or put on display. Instead, the Egyptian obsession with the preservation of bodies was linked to their view of a complete body being essential as a place for the soul to reside after death. Current mummies are a controversial issue due to how, or if, they should be displayed to the public because the Egyptian Kings wouldn't have wanted to be put on display. The way in which they are…show more content…
In this tradition, people would be mummified after death. Once this threshold had been crossed, a person's spirit or ba could be manifested in many places at once. After judgment, which could be cheated with magic, a person's ba could travel with Ra or rest with Osiris in the underworld (Egyptian 119). There were many different dangers to the dead and having a complete body with which to return to for rest was very important for the Egyptians. Human remains were not the objects of reverence and worship as Christian saints are these days. After covering the differences between western society and Egyptian preservation of the body, Morkot argues that ancient Egyptian myth influenced the reasoning behind these actions. Each Egyptian was made up of the ka (guardian angel of sorts), ba (spirit released after death), akh (total aspect of a person/divine spirit), name (identifier of a person), body (made up of different elements), heart (seat of reason), and shadow (indicator of divine presence). The ka protected a person during life and reunited with them after death (42). Everyone had the potential to become an akh, which would then go about helping people that were still living (Egyptian 120). The ba could get offerings of sustenance or partake in scenes of art from people who provided them at designated places, indicated by the name of the dead person. The importance of having a name is shown here

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