Mummies! The very word excites even the most minimal of historic enthusiasm. They are a window to a world that has passed, and a peak into the lives of ordinary people who lives thousands of years ago. Mummies are more than just a shell of a former being; they are unique in their historical perspective. Unlike a clay pot, or an arrowhead, these were once living, breathing creatures. Some powerfull, some desperately poor, all human. The following is a list of the most famous mummies ever discovered.
Ramses The Great: Ramses The Great, is a no brainer. He is the only Pharaoh mentioned in the Bible, and his historical significance in Egypt, cannot be overstated. This is the very man whose son died suspiciously after dire warnings from Jewish prophet, Moses. He may have been witness to the parting of the Red Sea, and even more important, he is responsible for freeing the Hebrew slaves. The discovery of his well preserved mummy in 1889, set the scientific world on fire. His image is one of the most common throughout the land of Egypt, memorialized by statues and paintings. Currently, his mummy is on display at the Cairo Museum.
John Franklin: In 1845, Sir John Franklin, a popular British explorer, set sail for what would be his last journey. Hoping to explore the arctic, and document his findings on behalf of the crown, Franklin's journey quickly turned sour. After disappearing without a trace, years were spent searching for the lost party of Franklin's crew. It would not be until 1989, that their fate would finally be uncovered. When a team of scientists from the University of Alberta finally tracked down their final resting place, it was determined that the men had been poisoned by the lead containers that held their food items. Their bodies were so remarkably preserved; they could be identified by comparison with their painted portraits.
King Tut: King Tutankhamen has been given a legendary status thanks to the vast treasures, and mysterious circumstances that surrounded the discovery of his tomb. All of the pomp and circumstance however, does not live up to the ruling legacy left by the boy king. Ascending to the throne before his teens, the king only ruled his kingdom for less than a decade. Speculation has followed in the years since his exhumation, as to the cause of his death. It was determined in 2008 that Tut likely died as the result of wounds suffered in battle.
La Doncella: A pre-teen Incan girl, sacrificed to the gods of her people. She was so well preserved that when scientists found her, some were convinced she was a sleeping native. Discovered in the cold Andes, at an altitude of over 7,000, La Doncella, is considered to be the best preserved mummy in the world. Based on examinations performed by medical professionals, it appears the young girl had her throat slit before she was placed in her resting place in the high altitudes of Argentina. Today, her body is on display in her home country.