Few things in antiquity arouse fantasy and imagination as much as the kings and queens of ancient Egypt. The material of legend, horror and studies, the remains of these long-lost people, more popularly known as mummies, are revered not only as historical artifacts, but also as national treasures. Everything about them is treated with respect and sometimes with fear. Consider, for example, the mere transfer of these mummies from one museum to another, carried out in an elaborate and historic procession suitable for pharaohs.
18 kings and 4 four queens were set to be transferred from the Egyptian Museum to the new National Museum of Egyptian Civilization. Both are located in Cairo and are only 3 miles from each other, but the Egyptian government saw an opportunity to make a big fuss about it. Thus, the Golden Parade of the Pharaohs was made.
The parade placed the pharaohs in their chronological order of reign, from Seqenenre Taa II to Ramses IX of the 12th century BC There were, of course, intermediate highlights, such as Ramses II, perhaps one of the most famous of the group, and Queen Hatshepsut, notable for to sit on the throne at a time when women did not become pharaohs. In addition to people wearing ancient Egyptian costumes, the mummies were loaded in vehicles specially decorated to look like the war chariots of their times.
Transferring these historically critical mummies is not an easy task, of course. They had to use special nitrogen-filled boxes to protect the mummies and sarcophagi from the elements. The vehicles themselves were equipped with special shock absorbers and the roads along the route were repainted only for this occasion.
The grand procession and the new museum, which will be inaugurated this month, are expected to help revitalize the country’s tourism industry, which has been hit hard by the pandemic still underway. Of course, even and especially among the citizens of Egypt, there are differing opinions on how mummies, which are technically preserved human bodies, should be treated. Not to mention rumors of how delays in the transfer, which included the recent blockade of the Suez Canal, may be linked to the notorious curse of the pharaohs, after all.