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Books, Journals, New Media
September 17, 2003


Author Affiliations

Books, Journals, New Media Section Editor: Harriet S. Meyer, MD, Contributing Editor, JAMA; David H. Morse, MS, University of Southern California, Norris Medical Library, Journal Review Editor.

JAMA. 2003;290(11):1521-1522. doi:10.1001/jama.290.11.1521-a

For centuries, mummies have held a unique fascination for physicians and the public at large. In Europe in the 17th and 18th centuries, sporadic public displays of Egyptian mummies took place, too often the work of persons exploiting the macabre and morbid aspects of such specimens. In 1834, Thomas Pettigrew, a professor of anatomy at Charing Cross Hospital in London, was among the first to emphasize the bioanthropological value of carefully examining ancient mummies. His book, A History of Egyptian Mummies, has become a medical classic.