Egypt is hours away from witnessing pharaonic parade

Nevine El-Aref , Saturday 3 Apr 2021

Lavish parade is to see royal mummies cross the streets of Cairo in jaw-dropping procession

Tahrir square
General view shows Tahrir Square ahead of transfer of Royal mummies from the Egyptian Museum in Tahrir to the National Museum of Egyptian Civilization in Fustat, in Cairo, Egypt April 3, 2021. REUTERS

The royal mummies are to embark, within hours on a journey across Cairo to attain their final resting place at the National Museum of Egyptian Civilisation (NMEC) in Fustat.

The royal ancient Egyptian funerary procession will be revived, with a little twist. This time the royals will not be crossing the Nile from the east to be buried in their tombs in the west, for eternity. They will however, be following ancient Egyptian rituals, where the mummies are accompanied by prayers  and spells from the book of the dead, like it was always done in the ancient times, along with boxes that included all their possessions and funeral music playing in the background.

Tonight, the royal mummies will be crossing the streets of Cairo in a golden unrivalled parade along the Cairo Nile Corniche from the Egyptian Museum in Tahrir (EMC) to their final destination at the National Museum of Egyptian Civilization (NMEC), overlooking Ain Al-Sira lake, now known as Ain Hayat in Fustat.

They will be transported on 22 vehicles shaped like a pharaonic boat that had always transported the royals deceased to eternity. The vehicles are decorated with pharaonic scenes and decorations.

Around 60 motorcades will be led by 22 ancient Egyptian shaped chariots drawn by 44 horses. Upon their arrival at the NMEC, the mummies will be welcomed with full military honors befitting royalties. A collection of 150 horses and knights will say goodbye to the royal mummies upon their departure from Tahrir and welcome them upon arrival to NMEC.

The first mummy to lead the parade is that of King Seqnenre, the warrior who led the liberation war against the Hyksos, then the kings will follow according to chronological order.

Upon passing Tahrir square, lights will illuminate and the curtains will be removed to show a soared obelisk and four ram-headed sphinxes.

The logo of the parade was inspired by ancient Egyptian belief as it consists of the sacred scarab and the falcon wings, symbolising eternity and resurrection. The colours chosen are dark blue and gold, representing ancient Egyptian deities. According to ancient Egyptian belief, the gods have skin made of gold and hair made of the precious stone of Lapis Lazuli.

Around 20 renowned Egyptian actors and singers are participating in the parade among them Yosra, Mona Zaki, Ahmed Helmy, Hussein Fahmy, Asser Yassin, Nelly Karim, Amina Khalil, Karim Abdel-Aziz, Ahmed Ezz and singer Mohamed Mounir among others.

Renown musician Nader Abbasy will be leading the orchestra.

The square has been converted into an open-air museum, hosting a pharaonic exhibition with a historical pathway open to the public, functioning as an extension of the Egyptian museum.

After the inauguration, the square will be home to a 17-metre-tall, 90-ton obelisk from the era of Ramses II. It will also accommodate four ram-headed sphinxes as prime attractions. The square is dotted with many pharaonic-era florae like that of palm and olive trees.

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