Fire of Egyptian Antiquities in the Museum of Brazil hits Cairo with sadness

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The huge fire at the Rio de Janeiro National Museum in Brazil has destroyed 700 pieces of unique Egyptian antiquities, the largest and oldest collection of Egyptian antiquities in South America. Egyptian archaeologists regretted the loss of part of Egypt’s ancient heritage. Conditions on the museums of the world, ensure the protection of Egyptian antiquities presented there, the most basic and most important insurance against fire.

The museum had a large collection of Egyptian antiquities obtained through gift or purchase from auctions. A large part of the collection came to Brazil through Italian merchant Nicola Fengua, who brought a collection of Italian archaeologist Giovanni Battista Belzoni from Marseille to Brazil, Emperor Pedro I of 1826, the largest collection of Egyptian antiquities in the Americas.

Dr. Zahi Hawass, the former Egyptian Minister of Antiquities, told Asharq Al-Awsat that “the group of Egyptian antiquities at the Museum of Rio de Janeiro was the most attractive to visitors, especially the mummies.” He also visited the museum about five years ago. Mummies and Oshepti statues, most of which were discovered by the Italian archaeologist Belzoni, who performed archaeological excavations in Luxor, southern Egypt, and Karnak Temple (one of the most ancient Egyptian temples in Luxor).

Hawass added that “one of the most important exhibits in this museum is the ark of Amun (Shah Amun in Su), a wooden coffin of the late era, given by Khadio Ismail to the Brazilian Emperor Pedro II in 1876.

The importance of this coffin is due to its beauty, the way it was produced, in addition to the personality of its owner, who was the originator of the god Amun, and this is a great place, and it is from the third intermediate age, namely the family 23 (750 years BC), and this is a rare period in its effects », pointing out that« the remarkable part of this coffin, which gives him great importance », is that« did not open ».

Among the important Egyptian monuments lost in the fire is a mummy of a princess from the Roman period called “the goddess” or the “princess of the sun.” “This mummy is distinguished in the decomposition of embalming,” says the chamois. “There are only 8 mummies in the world that have been mummified in this way.”

The Egyptian group at the National Museum of Brazil, which was set on fire, had three coffins of the Amon priests: Huri, Bastajev and Harares. Dr. Hussein Abdel Basir, director of the Antiquities Museum at the Bibliotheca Alexandrina, told Asharq Al-Awsat that “the Egyptian group included 3 Coffins of the Amonite priests, as well as a collection of ochapati statues, most of which belonged to King City I, as well as a number of human mummies, animals for cats, fish and crocodiles, funerary paintings and a bronze statue of the god Amun. , And saw the Egyptian group, which «is considered a Museum’s Most Important Items »

Until 1983, Egyptian law allowed the sale and donation of antiquities, and the foreign explorer was allowed to share the results of the excavations with Egypt. Under this law, many antiques were taken out of Egypt to be displayed in various museums of the world. , Although the UNESCO Convention on the Protection of Monuments signed in 1970 allows Egypt to claim any effects that emerged from the country illegally after signing.


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