Human Mummy
Biographical Information
Name(s) Neshkons
Sex male
Height The sarcophagus is 74 3/4 inches long
Culture Egyptian
Date(s) circa 990-940 B.C.
Site Luxor
Current Location
Location Museum of Natural Science in Houston
Catalog #

In 1900, Liberty E. Holden of Cleveland, Ohio, publisher of The Plains Dealer, observed the excavations of four mummies, but it is not known whether this was a staged event for the benefit of the tourists or an actual discovery. He purchased one, and sent the still-sealed coffin to Cairo for export clearance by the Egyptian Museum officials. At the time the mummy was named Othphto, for no known reason. It seems the name was simply made up.

From Cairo the mummy was shipped to Cleveland, where it was donated to the Western Reserve Historical Society. The coffin was opened and the mummy partially unwrapped in the Society’s auditorium. A partial reading of the inscriptions lead to the mummy’s identification as Djed-Khons-Iwef-Ankh, but it is now apparent that Neshkons was the original owner of the sarcophagus and lived in the Third Intermediate Period, Dynasty XXI.


The body was carefully preserved in natron and bitumen, and expertly wrapped in quality linen. The head and part of the chest that was unwrapped exposes two wax winged falcon amulets and a faience heart scarab originally placed over the chest.


For many years the mummy was on display at Frank H. McClung Museum, University of Tennessee, Knoxville. The Western Reserve Historical Society in Cleveland, Ohio recalled him and to be sold at Christie's Auction December 7, 2006 for $1,136,000. The mummy was purchased by the Merrin Gallery. Neskhons was then sold to a private collector who had him CT-scanned in 2012. He was most recently a part of the exhibition Life and Death in Ancient Egypt at the Museum of Natural Science in Houston.

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