T.Lalith Singh

It is believed to be dating back to 2,500 B.C.

No experts available in the country to help preserve it

The VIth Nizam of Hyderabad brought it in the 1920s

HYDERABAD: More than 4,500 years after she died, a mummified daughter of the VIth Pharaoh of Egypt cries for attention at the A.P. State Museum at Public Gardens here. With no experts available in the country to help preserve and waiting for assistance from outside, the Mummy appears to have started giving into the pressures of time.

One of the six

Though the Mummy, one of the six Egyptian Mummies preserved at museums in the country, has recently been shifted to a better enclosure, the need for immediate steps towards conservation is showing. The wrapping has started to peel and the outer crust is fragmenting at several places and the cracks are very conspicuous at several places.

The Mummy here is believed to be that of a young girl aged between 16 years to 18 years and daughter of the Pharaoh dated to 2,500 B.C. It was brought by Nazeer Nawaz Jung, son-in-law of Mir Mahboob Ali Khan, the VIth Nizam of erstwhile Hyderabad in 1920s. It was said to have been taken for a price of 1,000 pounds and gifted to the VIIth Nizam, Mir Osman Ali Khan. The same was donated to the Hyderabad Museum which was opened in the year 1930 and since then has been on display.

The thicker crust of the Mummy with colourful motifs painted all over has broken at several places and even the clothe wrapped around the body is disintegrating. A thin dusty layer of crumbling wrapping and outer shell has gathered along the bottom of the air-tight enclosure.

Specialised task

Though the museum authorities have been making efforts to get experts in preservation techniques, they have not succeeded since no experts are available in the country. “Mummy conservation is a specialised task and we have been searching for an expert in the field to help us conserve the Mummy here better,” says J.Kedareswari, Director, Archaeology and Museum. Her department has already approached the British Council, Chennai and the British Museum, London seeking help in inviting an Egyptian Mummy conservationist. “The British Museum responded back stating that it was not in a position to spare a conservationist,” she says. Other experts in Cairo were also approached but there has been no response so far, she informs.