‘White people’ slammed for opening ancient Egyptian mummy tomb
Social-media watchdogs are slamming “white people” for unearthing a 2,500-year-old mummy from its tomb in the sprawling Saqqara necropolis of Egypt.
Archeologists discovered 59 coffins belonging to Egyptian priests and officials from the 26th dynasty in August south of Cairo — and they went on display Saturday. They were buried in three 30- to 40-foot shafts, along with 28 statues of the ancient Egyptian god Seker, Reuters reported.
One tomb was opened in front of reporters to reveal the mummy inside, the Associated Press reported. A video of the act has now gone viral with nearly 14 million views on Twitter as of Tuesday morning.
Some Twitter critics were not impressed.
“We’re trained very early on to think that mummies and tombs need unearthing, but its kind of sad that even in death POC can’t escape the prying and opportunistic advances of white people,” wrote one commenter in a Twitter thread with nearly 150,000 likes and thousands of retweets and comments. “Idk if Im talking out my ass but something about this feels evil. When I die, keep white people away from me.”
Another Twitter user agreed: “It’s super disrespectful because the entire reason they were buried in these was so they could be guided to the afterlife and we were kinda just like haha no.”
Yet another outraged viewer commented that “It’s even worse than that. They believed that your afterlife only lasted as long as your body does. That’s why they went to all the trouble of mummification in the first place. So this is more than just disrespectful, it’s the equivalent of ripping someone out of heaven.”
However, the angry online masses seemed clueless that the archaeological team behind the discovery was actually of Egyptian heritage. They launched their dig amid the 11 pyramids of Saqqara in 2018. Prior discoveries included a cache of mummified lions, cats and crocodiles.
The coffins — hailing from the Pharaonic Late Period (664-525 B.C.) — were in pristine condition thanks to a protective seal that preserved them over the centuries, Mostafa Waziri, secretary-general of Egypt’s Supreme Council of Antiquities, told Reuters.
The mission will continue opening the coffins and studying their contents before their eventual display at the Grand Egyptian Museum, expected to open next year, Waziri said.
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