Death and Burial in Ancient Egypt


Joshua J. Mark
published on 09 January 2013

Death and Burial in Ancient Egypt

Dr. Salima Ikram's Death and Burial in Ancient Egypt is among the best works on the subject presently on the market. Dr. Ikram earned her Ph. D. in Egyptology and Museum Studies at Cambridge and yet her work breathes with a love of the subject matter and, refreshingly, lacks the academic jargon which mars so many otherwise fine books on this subject.  Dr. Ikram has recreated the mummification process in modern-day laboratories and so brings a practical, as well as scholarly, approach to the subject. Regarding mummification, she writes:

The key ingredient in the mummification was natron, or netjry, divine salt. It is a mixture of sodium bicarbonate, sodium carbonate, sodium sulphate and sodium chloride that occurs naturally in Egypt, most commonly in the Wadi Natrun some sixty four kilometres northwest of Cairo. It has desiccating and defatting properties and was the preferred desiccant, although common salt was also used in more economical burials (55).

This book takes a reader from the early history of ancient Egypt through the beliefs and funerary practices of the people and includes the development of the mastaba tombs and the later pyramids. An excellent work and highly recommended.

About the Reviewer

Joshua J. Mark
A freelance writer and former part-time Professor of Philosophy at Marist College, New York, Joshua J. Mark has lived in Greece and Germany and traveled through Egypt. He has taught history, writing, literature, and philosophy at the college level.

Cite This Work

APA Style

Mark, J. J. (2013, January 09). Death and Burial in Ancient Egypt. Ancient History Encyclopedia. Retrieved from

Chicago Style

Mark, Joshua J. "Death and Burial in Ancient Egypt." Ancient History Encyclopedia. Last modified January 09, 2013.

MLA Style

Mark, Joshua J. "Death and Burial in Ancient Egypt." Ancient History Encyclopedia. Ancient History Encyclopedia, 09 Jan 2013. Web. 22 Jan 2020.

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