Senbi the Scribe: An Egyptian mummy for researchers
Where he was found
Senbi the Scribe is an Egyptian mummy which was donated to the Cleveland Museum of Natural History as part of the Hamann-Todd Osteology collection.
When he was made
The mummy has not been dated; however, a cursory examination of the mummification of his head reveals that it is very dark in color, presumably from an over-use of resin. This suggests that the mummy was made at a late date in Egyptian mummification, perhaps during the Greco-Roman period.
How was he made
Senbi the Scribe is an artificial mummy made by Egyptian mummymakers.
What's special about him
As part of the Hammann-Todd Osteology collection, Senbi was sacrificed (long ago by the doctor who collected the mummy) so that his bones would be available for study. A drawer in the museum's back room contains his body which was reduced to a skeleton. The resin was so thick, however, that it still coats many of the bones. The hands and feet were not taken apart and each resides in its own little box in the skeleton's drawer (you can see them at the bottom of the photo on the right). When I visited the mseum many years ago, the man in charge of my visit showed me the drawer and even opened the boxes that contained the hands and feet. Look below and you will see one of the feet as it was shown to me.
The head, however, was kept in its mummified condition and resides in a small box (about the size of a bowling ball). During my visit, I was asked if I wanted to see the head. Of course, I did. This is what I saw:
Where to see him
Senbi the Scribe can only be seen by scholars and researchers. As part of the osteology collection, he is not on display for the regular museum-goer at the Cleveland Museum of Natural History.