Mummy’s curse vs. modern science
Sounding an additional note of caution, Markel underscores the ethical concerns of posthumous research. “It’s not just our modern sensibilities,” he says. “Egyptians didn’t want their mummies disturbed, which is why they placed curses on anyone who did.”
“As we blend and marry different tools to examine peoples’ bodies, both living and deceased, we have to think about the ethical content of these studies. Does it answer important questions we don’t know about the era? Does it help us understand more about the disease today? Finding out whether Abraham Lincoln had an upset stomach on the day he was assassinated wouldn’t pass the test. This research does.”
Chris Haines is a writer living in New York.