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Halifax to welcome Egyptian mummies at Museum of Natural History

This photo released on Thursday, Feb. 13, 2014 by Egypt's Supreme Council of Antiquities, shows a preserved wooden sarcophagus that dates back to 1600 BC, when the Pharaonic 17th Dynasty reigned, in Egypt.
This photo released on Thursday, Feb. 13, 2014 by Egypt's Supreme Council of Antiquities, shows a preserved wooden sarcophagus that dates back to 1600 BC, when the Pharaonic 17th Dynasty reigned, in Egypt. AP Photo/Egypt's Supreme Council Of Antiquities

More than 100 ancient Egyptian artifacts, including mummies, painted sarcophagi and votive objects will be featured at the Museum of Natural History on Feb. 22.

The exhibit, which is called Egyptian Mummies and Eternal Life, is being brought from the Museo Egizio of Florence, Italy to make its North American debut in Halifax. 

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“There isn’t an opportunity to see anything like this, really, east of Toronto and sort of north of Boston. And so we’ve been working really hard over the last few years to bring these sorts of exhibits that people don’t normally have an opportunity to be exposed to,” said Jeff Gray, curator of visitor experiences and exhibits.

Gray said that people are fascinated by the Egyptian pyramids, mummies and the ancient world in general, which is what makes the exhibit so appealing to the public.

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2,500-year old ‘poorly preserved’ mummy may offer cues into ancient Egypt
2,500-year old ‘poorly preserved’ mummy may offer cues into ancient Egypt

“People enjoy seeing the similarities and the differences that existed in the six thousand years of time between now and what is in that show. I think all of those things combined make it a really exciting opportunity to come and check out the museum.”

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Admission to the exhibit will cost $8 per person, $2 more than the regular price of entry, said Gray.

“This show is slightly more expensive than some of the other big exhibits that we’ve brought into the museum. And so in an effort to cover our costs and make sure that we are fiscally responsible in bringing the exhibit in, we wanted to look at a slightly higher fee to ensure that we did meet those targets,” he said.

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The exhibit will be on view until June 21, which Gray said will allow more people from outside the city to come see the exhibit.

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“Most temporary travelling shows are really only available for about 95 days,” said Gray. “So we’re excited [about the] extra time.”

Gray said that the museum is currently working on bringing more exhibits to the public.

“We are looking for other shows and we always encourage anyone who loves coming to these exhibits to reach out to us, let us know what kinds of shows they’d like to see. And we’ll try to make those shows happen,” he said.

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