Hawara Child
Human Mummy
Courtesy, The British Museum
Biographical Information
Name(s) Hawara Child
Age child
Sex unconfirmed, but speculatively a boy
Culture Egyptian
Site Hawara
Current Location
Location The British Museum
Catalog # EA21809
Acquired by the museum in 1888, donated by Henry Kennard from a site in Hawara, Egypt excavated by Flinders Petrie.


Enclosed in a painted body-case of linen, plaster and resin, overlaid with a decorated burial-cloth. The tempera portrait, surrounded by a layer of wrappings, shows the child dressed in a whitish tunic and wearing a red ribbon around the neck. This was probably attached to an amulet, now lost. The rest of the body is covered by a painted shroud, adorned with rows of stucco studs, and with bandages arranged in a geometrical pattern over the feet. A central band which was intended to receive an inscription, was left blank.


The style of the painting, in particular the arrangement of the hair, points to a date in the reign of the Roman emperor Claudius.

Owing to the tightness of the wrappings all the ribs have been dislocated, but apparently not fractured. The spinal column shows numerous subluxations. There seems to be packing material in the thoracic and abdominal cavities. The pelvis is dislocated. Arms are extended, but dislocated at the elbows, the hands are almost certainly in contact with the thighs. Scans reveal areas of unusually high density within the bone of both legs. This may be an indication that the child suffered from a bone tumor, but it is also possible that the variable density was caused by molten resin penetrating the bones during mummification.


Length: 92 centimetres Width: 31 centimetres Height: 31 millimetres

External Links


Retrieved November 21, 2017, from

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