Ancient mummy facing threat of water damage safely relocated in Jaipur’s Albert Hall museum – art and culture


An ancient Egyptian mummy called Tutu, a prized possession of the city’s Albert Hall museum, has been shifted to a safer place in the building following threats of it getting damaged due to heavy rains that hit Jaipur last week. Though the mummy escaped the damage, several other artefacts and paintings were drenched in the rain water, an official said on Wednesday.

“The mummy is intact and suffered no damage. The staffers broke the glass cover and removed it from the basement where three to four ft high rainwater had accumulated on Friday,” said Archaeology and Museums Department Director Prakash Chand Sharma.

It is a woman’s mummy belonging to Egypt’s Ptolemaic period (322 BC to 30 BC) and was imported to Jaipur in 1887. It was last examined and re-preserved by experts from Egypt in 2011 and was found to be in a good condition.

Jaipur: A 2400-year old mummy kept out of its box at a safe place after rain water entered the historic Albert Hall museum's basement, in Jaipur, Tuesday, Aug 18, 2020. The mummy was taken out of its preservation box for the first time in the past 130 year to save it from drowning in the rain water.

Jaipur: A 2400-year old mummy kept out of its box at a safe place after rain water entered the historic Albert Hall museum’s basement, in Jaipur, Tuesday, Aug 18, 2020. The mummy was taken out of its preservation box for the first time in the past 130 year to save it from drowning in the rain water.
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PTI
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Several other historical articles and paintings, both in the display and in the storeroom in the basement, were damaged due to the water. “The loss assessment can be done only after the drenched items, including folded paintings and documents, are dried. The items of stones and metals are safe but paintings and other things have been damaged. The assessment may take four to five months,” he said.

Jaipur: Monsoon clouds hover in the sky above the historic Albert Hall museum, in Jaipur, Tuesday, Aug 18, 2020.

Jaipur: Monsoon clouds hover in the sky above the historic Albert Hall museum, in Jaipur, Tuesday, Aug 18, 2020.
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PTI
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Heavy rains hit Jaipur on Friday and water accumulated in the basement of the museum, the officer said, adding several official documents and other items, kept in the office behind the Albert Hall, were also damaged. He said the mummy’s X-ray is also on display for the public. The state Art and Culture Minister B D Kalla conducted an inspection of the museum on Tuesday and gave directions to find out possibilities to display the items, kept in stores at other places in the city.

“We can identify space in other monuments for setting up galleries where these items can be displayed. There are many articles which were kept in the store in the basement. Many of them are A-class items with a high historic value,” the officer said. The museum in the iconic Albert hall, which is located in the middle of Ramniwas Garden in the heart of the city, exhibits more than 20,000 historic items like coins, attires of rulers, paintings, wooden crafts etc.

(This story has been published from a wire agency feed without modifications to the text. Only the headline has been changed.)

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