The clear that Egyptians believed this journey

The clear that Egyptians believed this journey

The burial mask of King Tutankhamen, Egyptian pharaoh from approximately1361-1352 BC, reveals much about his ancient culture. The people held the utmostrespect for their King and took much care to prepare him for entombment. Also, theimmense wealth of the country is reflected in the large amount of gold and preciousjewels used in the construction of the mask. The importance of religion and the soulsjourney to the afterlife is clearly recognizable in various Egyptian symbols and designs. It is very evident that the kings subjects held a great respect for him, and theywere very careful in designing and perfecting his burial mask. The small details give anidea of just how long a time it took to perfect it.

The mask was beaten out of pure goldand the designs had to be added by hand. They were sure to include the symbols of thetwo Kingdoms of Egypt, the cobra and vulture; signifying the deceased as an importantruler of the entire country.Whom ever it was who created this fine piece of art also hadto be sure to fashion the mask in a way that resembled the pharaoh, and yet, madecorrections and addions to his actual appearance.

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The people so highly regarded theirleader that they made sure he was sent to the afterlife with nothing but the best.The large amount of gold and fine jewels that were transformed into the mask area great testament to the incredible wealth of the nation. No expense was spared, eventhough the mask was created only to be hidden away for all eternity in a dark tomb. It isobvious that the Egyptians had so much money in their treasury. Even for an almostinsignificant child-king they were willing to form a burial mask completely out of goldand pay for the skilled labor required to sculpt it. All of this was in addition to theabsolutely breathtaking quantity of valuable metals and minerals used in the constructionof the many other works of art buried with Tutankhamen. Perhaps the most clearly seen characteristic of Egyptian culture was the regardthe people had for their religion.

They added a beard to the mask, a symbol meant toshow the connection between the pharaoh and the god Osiris. This god was also god ofthe underworld and one of the biggest reasons the people spared no expense in burial wasto prove to Osiris that the dead king was an important person in life. A person whodeserved to be granted entrance to the afterworld. A scarab beetle was hung around theneck at the bottom of the mask, portraying the soul that would be journeying to the worldafter death. It is clear that Egyptians believed this journey was the most important thatanyone would make.

Although King Tutankhamen was an unimportant king in the history of Egyptiancivilization, his undisturbed tomb has told modern archeologists more about his culturethan any other of its kind. The mask used to cover his hallowed head showed the highlevel of respect and power he had held in life, as well as the tremendous wealth of hiskingdom and devotion to their religious beliefs.

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