Egyptian canopic jars

The ancient egypt people use canopic jars as a part and as a ritual at the mummification process. The main purpose of canopic jars was to keep and preserve the viscera because they believed they will need this body parts after their death in the other world. All the viscera were not kept in a single canopic jar, but each organ was placed in a canopic jar of its own. There were 4 canopic jars displays in the tombs, each jar contained different human parts: liver, lungs, intestines and the stomach.

The Canopic Jars were made from stones or pottery. Those canopic jars created in the early times of the old egyptian kingdom to the 332 BC. The name canopic jars came from a mistake associated by early Egyptologists with the greek legend about Canopus.

The design of those canopic jars changed through the time. In the Old Kingdom the canopic jars had flat lids, and later jars with human heads that represent the dead. And in the final period those heads represented the four sons of Horus:

Hapi - The baboon headed god represents the north, It`s canopic jar stored the lungs and was protected by the goddess Nephthys.

Imseti - The humanheaded god represents the south, It`s canopic jar stored the liver and was protected by the goddess Isis.

Qebehsenuef - The falcon headed god represents the west, It`s canopic jar stored the intestines and was protected by the goddess Selket.

Duamutef - The jackal headed god represents the east, It`s canopic jar stored the human stomach and was protected by the goddess Neith.

The four sons of Horus were also the gods and each one of them was in charge for protecting a specific human organ, and they were also protected by goddesses from any danger. It was believed the dead would need it`s organs for the after world therefore the canopic jars were all put inside the canopic chest and buried in tomb with the sarcophagus of the dead person.

The dead person`s heart was not taking out of the dead body to the Canopic Jars, it was left in it`s place because they believed that the human soul is inside the heart. There is also myth that after the death the heart of the person is is weighted against the feather of truth owned by god Anubis. and if the heart was heavier than the feather of truth because of bad action during the life time. A monster will eat it`s heart.

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