High-Tech Scanner Could Reveal Mummy's 2,500-Year-Old Past

A 2,500-year-old Egyptian mummy, under examination of a high-tech scanner at Stanford Medical Center, may shed new light on ancient medical care and death in Egypt, reports say.

Researchers at Stanford are analyzing a minor priest from ancient Egypt named Iret-net Hor-irw, or "The Eye of Horus is Upon You," the San Francisco Chronicle reports. Probably just 20 when he died in the Egyptian cult city of Akhmim, the mummy is being readied for a new exhibition, "Very Postmortem: Mummies and Medicine," set to open in October at San Francisco's Palace of the Legion of Honor.

Using a unique 3-D X-ray machine, researchers positioned the mummy's body on a horizontal platform so scanners could record up to 3,200 images at once. The images will be studied and later included in the exhibition.

"He's very well preserved," Rénee Dreyfus, curator of ancient art and interpretation at the Legion of Honor, told the San Francisco Chronicle. "He seems much more intact than many other mummies. It's just amazing how much he will be able to tell us about his time and the cult of the dead that was so important in ancient Egypt."

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