Fancy Being a Mummy?

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Fancy Being a Mummy?

Post by Guest on Wed Oct 19, 2011 9:27 pm

'Tutan-Alan' Donates Body For Mummification
2:49pm UK, Tuesday October 18, 2011

A taxi driver from Torquay has become the first person in 3,000 years to be mummified.

The scientists with Mr Billis' mummified body

Alan Billis, who died in January, volunteered to undergo the procedure - which a scientist has been working on recreating for years - after being diagnosed with terminal cancer.

The 61-year-old had the backing of his wife Jan, who said: "I'm the only woman in the country who's got a mummy for a husband."

The process of mummification has been filmed for a television documentary where Dr Stephen Buckley, a chemist and research fellow from York University, uses the same techniques that ancient Egyptians performed on Tutankhamun.

Alongside archaeologist Dr Jo Fletcher, Dr Buckley has studied mummified bodies, analysing tissue samples and finally putting his findings into practice on Mr Billis' body at Sheffield's Medico-Legal Centre.

Mr Billis had been diagnosed with lung cancer when he heard about the search for a body donor.

Alan Billis and his wife Jan

"I was reading the paper and there was a piece that said, 'Volunteer wanted with a terminal illness to donate their body to be mummified,'" he told the Channel 4 documentary team.

"People have been leaving their bodies to science for years and, if people don't volunteer for anything, nothing gets found out."

Mr Billis, who dubbed himself Tutan-Alan, continued: "Experimenting is all about trying different processes to make things work. If it doesn't work it's not the end of the world, is it?

"Don't make any difference to me, I'm not going to feel it. It's still bloody interesting."

His wife took his decision in her stride and said: "He just said, 'I've just phoned someone up about being mummified.' I said, 'You've what?' 'Yes, I've phoned up someone about being mummified.'

"And I thought, here we go again. What's going to go on now? It's just the sort of thing you would expect him to do."

The Egyptians became known for the medical techniques they used during the mummification process, like removing the brain through the nostrils.

Mr Billis' brain was left in place but other internal organs, including his lungs and intestines, were removed through an incision in his side. The sterilised cavity was padded with linen.



Valley of the Kings in Egypt



The scientists then immersed the corpse in a salt bath for more than a month to draw out the water.

To protect the skin from the harsh salt it was covered in a special protective layer of oils.

The body was then wrapped in linen - like the classic image of a mummy - protecting it from light and insects, and his wife made a visit, leaving favourite photographs and drawings by his grandchildren.

After three months of drying, the process was judged to be complete.

Mr Billis had said one of his prime motivations was his grandchildren: "Perhaps this would give them an insight into what their granddad was like, I don't know.

"They'll most probably tell somebody at school that my granddad's a pharaoh. That's my legacy I suppose."

But the taxi driver said he had just one regret about the process: "Shame I'm not gonna be around to see it, isn't it? I'd like to have seen that because I like documentaries."

http://news.sky.com/home/strange-news/article/16091230


I really don't get it!


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Re: Fancy Being a Mummy?

Post by Guest on Wed Oct 19, 2011 9:30 pm

Money ?

Did his family get paid ?

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Re: Fancy Being a Mummy?

Post by Guest on Wed Oct 19, 2011 9:33 pm

Angel wrote:Money ?

Did his family get paid ?

I don't think so, it said volunteered!

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Re: Fancy Being a Mummy?

Post by Guest on Wed Oct 19, 2011 9:36 pm

It's crazy .... I'd have insisted on the money ! Smile


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