The headline’s questionable, but read on — the story’s killer.
“Queen Nefer-kitty: Expert makes dead pets into mummies, pyramids sold separately,” begins a story in the New York Daily News this past weekend.
It’s about a New York woman who makes a living mummifying pets.
Kingston, N.Y., resident Sorceress Cagliastro, who specialises in pets that weigh up to 100 pounds, says she’s “fascinated by this thing called death.”
To date, she has embalmed racing pigeons, a macaw, a millipede, a peacock, a caiman, guinea pigs, and an armadillo, the paper reports.
Her services cost between $800 and $4,000 and include everything from a “simple linen wrap all the way up to painted with semi-precious metals, decorated with heirloom jewelry or, say, a scrolled up piece of parchment inside,” Cagliastro said.
Of course, those who stayed awake in history class might remember that the ancient Egyptians sent more than a few animals — household pets included — off to the sarcophagus, as they would any old king or queen.
According to the educational website ThinkQuest — “by students for students”:
They would sacrifice the animal and then mummify it to honour their god. They sacrificed dogs for the god named Anubis, Anubis was the god that did the embalming, They would sacrifice and mummify a cat for Bastet, that was the goddess of the cats.
For those interested, there’s plenty of literature — and a few how-tos) in the internets to get you started
Indeed, Cagliastro said she learned about mummification by reading Egyptian texts at the Brooklyn Museum while recovering from a “horrific” car accident 15 years ago.
She practiced on chicken wings bought at a supermarket.
Before starting her unusual business, the “sorceress” — married ironically enough to an exterminator — was an embalmer and did forensic reconstruction work for the chief medical examiner’s office.
So it’s probably no surprise that and hopes to one day try mummifying humans.
“People choose all kinds of postmortem processes, and this is just one of them,” she told the NYDN.
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