Today we’ve got an extra special guest on the site. Inspired by the forthcoming Cybermummy conference and our lovely friends over at British Mummy Bloggers, we’ve invited a very different kind of mummy blogger to guest-post on ReallyKidFriendly.
I am part of the new exhibition at the Museum called ‘Mummies, Myths and Mosaics’. It features objects from three ancient civilisations: the Egyptians, the Greeks and the Romans. It also has objects that have been influenced by these ancient cultures, and how it continues even to this day. I will guide you round the exhibition and tell you about the treasures you will see.
I know a lot about this section of the exhibition, as this is where you can find me! I am a 2500 year old mummy, but I am only small. I was four years old when I died, and my parents mummified me and wrapped me and gave me a beautiful golden mask. I am covered with a sheet so that I am not on display all day. This protects me from the light and is respectful to me.
I’m not the only mummy in the exhibition. There is a mummified cat and crocodile on display with me! There are plenty of shabtis (little figures buried with the dead) and these will do the chores in the afterlife.
We even have a (small) piece of the pyramids in the exhibition! The pyramids were once covered with casing stones that would give the pyramid a smooth finish. These were removed in medieval times and used to build the city of Cairo. We have a small piece of a casing stone, and you can see how smooth it is!
Moving onwards to the Greeks, we see large statues around the exhibition space. These have been created by students at Cleveland College of Art and Design, and represent different stories in Greek mythology. We have a golden statue of King Midas, who was given the power to turn everything he touched to gold! We have a statue of the god of the sea, Posiedon, with his trident.
We have lots of Greek pots too! Greek pots often have pictures on them and can tell you a story. The students at the college have created large pots with different stories on them, including the story of Jason and the Golden Fleece.
The Romans are next are we have lots of items from our local Roman village, Catcote. Here you can see mosaic tiles that would have made up a beautiful floor in a Roman house. You can also see our Syrian soldier standing proud with his bow and arrows.
There is a model of our Roman village of Catcote, so you can see the types of houses the Romans would have lived in. They did not have villas in this area, instead they lived in roundhouses and the people would be farmers. Some of the objects found do show that they were buying objects from abroad, as they had to be imported into the country.
The last section of the exhibition is about modern day Hartlepool and how these cultures have changed the town. We have a recreation of an archaeologists desk, with all the equipment they would have needed to dig and discover some of the objects that you see on display.
There is a beautiful white marble statue that is very similar to those you find in ancient Greek or Rome, which would be of the different gods they believed in. This section is labelled rediscovery as many of the cultures lay forgotten until archaeologist discovered them. We even have a copy of the diary of archaeologist Howard Carter who found the tomb of the pharaoh, Tutanhkamun!
Not only can you see all of these objects, but there are activities and games to play. These games all date back to ancient times. We have Senet, an old Egyptian board game; knucklebones, a Greek game played today; and Tic-Tak-Toe, a Roman game we now call noughts and crosses!
I think I’m quite tired now looking at all of that! I think I will lie down in my case for a while. So why not come and visit and remember to say hello as you go past!