Mumified cats, crocodiles and birds at the Ashmolean Museum!

Year 4 travelled back thousands of years in time to the Ancient Egyptians.

During our visit to the Ashmolean Museum in Oxford, we used the archaeological evidence to discover more about the life and beliefs in Ancient Egypt.

We learnt about three powerful Egyptians: King Taharqa, Djeddjehutyluefankh (Djed) and Lady Meresamun who was a musician and then had to identify which tomb the possessions had come from.

One student said that “It was great being able to hold and feel the real artefacts but we were a bit surprised that the mirror was so dull. In fact, lots our group thought it was a pizza cutter”.

Another added, “Djed’s coffin was particularly impressive, very elaborate decorations and three layers of lids to guard his coffin”.

After looking at the mummified bodies, we focused on the canonic jars, that stored the vital organs such as the stomach, intestines, liver and lungs. We were surprised to learn that the Egyptians disregarded the brain, as they believed it was unimportant whereas the heart was left in the body as they believed it was the centre of intelligence and needed for the journey to the afterlife.

We were taught about the significance of the scarab beetle and that the Egyptians believed it would protect them in the afterlife. We also learnt about the Ankh, a hieroglyphic symbol representing life itself.

Finally, we replicated Howard Carter’s method of remembering all of the items that he discovered in Tutankhamun’s tomb, by sketching some of the artefacts that we found in the Egyptian gallery.

“I couldn’t believe that they mummified animals too. We saw a mummified cat, crocodile and bird!”

Thank you to our fantastic guide and to the Ashmolean Museum for having us!