MUMMIES OF THE PHARAOHS: Modern Medical Investigations by Maurice Bucaille

MUMMIES OF THE PHARAOHS: Modern Medical Investigations

By
Email this review

KIRKUS REVIEW

Mum's the word for this one--a jumbled, self-promoting mishmash of Egyptology and biblical speculation that's best left on the shelf. It's hard to say just what this is about. At times Bucaille, a French archeologist, seems intent on proving his pet theory that Ramses II's son, Merneptah, was the Pharaoh drowned during the biblical Exodus. At other times he seems to be saluting his own skill as a mummy expert, in large measure by denigrating his colleagues' work (especically that of Howard Carter, whom Bucaille accuses of lying and cover-up). While assembling this jumble, Bucaille does deliver some useful mummy lore. We learn how to embalm a mummy (""a high-pressure irrigation system was employed to force the shredded pieces of brain out of the cranial cavity,"" and so on, literally ad nauseam); how to examine one for skin, foot, and dental disease; what to look for with X-rays or microscope; how to build a sepulchre. Perhaps unsure of his audience--is this intended for physicians or mummy-struck teens?--Bucaille even devotes a section to debunking the curse of Tutankhamen, which no one outside the supermarket tabloids takes seriously. Keep this one under wraps.

Pub Date: Dec. 4th, 1990
Publisher: St. Martin's