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'Really big mummies' Ancient Egyptians stuffed crocodiles with papyrus to appease the gods

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And the worship of Sobek was so important in Tebtunis, a temple in his dedication was constructed in the town’s centre.

Professor Lucarelli said: “And so, because they were so dangerous and feared, there was, almost, I think, a need to see them as gods and to appease them.”

“So, by having a temple to the crocodile god, bringing offerings was a way to respect the aggressive character of these animals and, theoretically, to use this power with benevolence towards humankind.

“Also, crocodiles were very prolific, so they became also a symbol of fertility.”

Egyptian priests would embalm the beasts, carefully wrapping them in the same linen wraps used for humans.

And to keep their shape in death, the crocodiles were stuffed with waste papyri that had been previously written over.



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