August 28, 2019 4:49 pm
Updated: August 28, 2019 5:24 pm

‘They wanted to be immortal’: Mummies have stories to tell at Montreal Museum of Fine Arts

WATCH: Montreal's Museum of Fine Arts is preparing to welcome some very special guests. Nestawedjat is the name of one six mummies set to make an appearance at the Egyptian Mummies: Exploring Ancient Lives exhibit slated to start in September and run until February. Brittany Henriques has more.


The Montreal Museum of Fine Arts (MMFA) will host six mummies from overseas in an effort to educate Montrealers on ancient Egyptian life, death and the afterlife.

“They wanted to be immortal,” said Laura Vigo, curator of Asian art and archaeology at the MMFA. “So in a way the fact that they actually managed to travel to us like rock stars. It is actually kind of a way of immortalizing them.”

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The MMFA is preparing to unveil a new exhibit titled Egyptian Mummies: Exploring Ancient Lives in September. After running in Australia and China, the exhibit from the British Museum is making its North American debut.

READ MORE: Once-taboo depictions of nude models unveiled at Montreal fine arts museum

The interactive exhibit will delve into different themes such as magic, music, gods and infancy.

“We will talk about mummification: the mummification process and how it was carried out, who were the agents in the process, what was the importance in mummification and how that evolved,” said Vigo.

Caroline Barton, collection manager at the British Museum, says the technologies used on the archaeological finds are groundbreaking.

Artifacts from the Egyptian Mummies: Exploring Ancient Lives Exhibit.


“On certain scans you can go so deep, you can see the contents of their stomachs,” said Barton. “On some examples — what was their last meals? Things like that, which 10 to 15 years ago we could have never comprehended that we could do things of that standard.”

Vigo believes ancient Egyptian finds are crucial to our growth as a society.

READ MORE: Montreal’s Museum of Fine Arts hosts unique naked tour

“It makes us realize that we’re not that much different, that we can actually learn about the past to understand the present and foresee the future,” she said.

The star mummy of the show, Nestawedjat, is a rare find, according to Barton.

Artifacts from the Egyptian Mummies: Exploring Ancient Lives Exhibit.


“We have the opportunity, that we have not only her but her inner coffin that she would’ve been buried in, the middle coffin that that coffin would’ve been buried in and a very large decorated outer coffin,” she said.

The exhibit will run from Sept. 14 to Feb. 2, 2020.

Mummy and coffin from the Egyptian Mummies: Exploring Ancient Lives Exhibit

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