Kathy W.'s Human Mummy Recipe
A former student remembers her own experience making a human mummy--in front of the entire school! Talk about stage fright!
Kathy W. from Alaska wrote to suggest how children could make an Egyptian mummy (a humanmummy) as a school project, using a recipe she perfected quite a long time ago.
Kathy remembered: "When I was in 5th grade, 36 years ago, I did a mummy demonstration when we were studying Egypt. A friend was the dead body, and I pulled out his innards and replaced them with preservatives (sawdust, salt, etc.). It was so creative that we ended up doing it before the whole school. I really thought your web pages were really terrific and hope to visit them again!"
I don't know if Kathy is a good cook or not--but here is her great recipe. I have taken the liberty of changing it a little--and you should, too:
1 dead body (in Kathy's case, her friend Kelly was the "victim")
1 large knife (cut from cardboard and covered with aluminum foil)
jewelry and trinkets
white sheet (for wrapping)
refrigerator box (for the coffin), painted with Egyptian funeral scenes, hieroglyphics, udjat-eyes and false door
assorted innards (very long rope for the large intestine; cardboard for heart, liver and kidneys; balloons for the stomach and lungs)
1. Give your audience an introduction on mummies. (The "dead body" lies on table beside you. The body should be on a sheet and at least partly covered by a plain towel.) Tell who they were, why they were made, etc.
2. Announce that you will now demonstrate how to make an Egyptian mummy.
3. Remove the insides so that the body does not rot. Take the large cardboard knife and pretend to slice the body open. Then, as you pull out each of the innards, announce what you are removing. (Kathy remembered: "While Kelly was up there, he would wiggle his toes which made everyone laugh because he was suppose to be dead.")
4. Add liberal amounts of natron (salt) to dry the body for many days. Sprinkle salt.
5. Pack with sawdust to return the body to its natural shape. Add handfuls of sawdust under the towel. (Kathy remembered: "The sawdust made Kelly sneeze which made everyone laugh again.")
6. Wrap in cloth and add amulets and jewelry. Use sheet that body is already on top of.
7. Place in coffin for burial. Slide body off table and place in refrigerator box. Ask classmates to help carry mummy to the tomb.
8. Take a bow (and get your A)!
Thank you, Kathy!