The Painted Mask and X-Ray
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This mummy (on left), dated to the Roman era (about AD 220–250), is probably from the Egyptian site of Deir El-Bahri near Thebes. The painted mask is made from clay. At right is an X-ray of the mummified child. YPM catalog no. ANT.6942


Active research on the mummies in the Division of Anthropology continued in 2000 with the application of new methods of diagnostic imaging, which produced exciting information. The collaborative project expanded to include the Yale–New Haven Hospital and the Yale University School of Medicine.


We recently learned that a small Egyptian mummy in our collection, thought to be an infant, is actually the body of a child 7 to 8 years old who suffered from traumatic injuries and infections that contributed to its diminished size. Examination of radiographs of this individual by Dr. Joseph Slade of the Yale University School of Medicine revealed evidence of interrupted growth, possibly due to malnutrition, systemic infection of the left hip and both shoulder joints, and several healed fractures.


A computerized tomography (CT) scan of this mummy may provide additional information about the individual’s health.