WHO'S YOUR MUMMY? (Video Included)

Mummy MRI portrait | Photo: YouTube screenshot The Israel Museum Jerusalem channelSomebody's mummy has lived in Jerusalem since about 1930. Whose mummy is it? Why was it made? An MRI yields surprising clues: this mummy is a lot like us.

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An ancient artifact get the high-tech treatment: In a new exhibit that opens Tuesday at the Israel Museum in Jerusalem, visitors can view an actual 2,200-year-old mummy. The museum exhibit is tricked out with cutting-edge technology designed to teach visitors about the embalming techniques employed by the ancient Egyptians.

The main draw of the exhibit, titled "A Mummy in Jerusalem: Secrets of the Afterlife," is the mummy itself, the embalmed body of Iret-hor-iru ("The Protective Eye of Horus"), a high-ranking priest from the city of Akhmim. The mummy, the only one in Israel, was given to the Jerusalem Pontifical Biblical Institute in around 1930 in honor of its inauguration by the Jesuits in Alexandria.

Little was known about the mummy, nicknamed "Alex" after the city from which it arrived. Researchers initially believed the mummy to be the body of a 17-year-old boy, but later investigation by museum staff in conjunction with researchers from Tel Aviv University and the Carmel Medical Center at the University of Haifa, including a CT scan, revealed new information about the mummy's life more than two millennia ago.

VIDEO OF 'ALEX' AND HIS MRI SCAN | ARTICLE CONTINUES BELOW

"The scans reveal that the mummy was preserved in excellent condition and we can see bones, teeth, tissue, blood vessels, and even eyelashes," explains curator Galit Bennett-Dahan.

"It turns out that Iret-hor-iru was about 40 years old when he died and 1.67 meters [about 5 feet, 6 inches] tall," she added.

According to Bennett-Dahan, the CT scan also revealed that the priest suffered from osteoporosis, which surprised doctors, as the disease is generally associated with the 20th century, and from tooth decay.

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This article was originally published by Israel Hayom at http://www.israelhayom.com/site/newsletter_article.php?id=35249

The video was produced by The Israel Museum Jerusalem

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Mummy MRI portrait Photo: YouTube screenshot The Israel Museum Jerusalem channel

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