Canopic Jars or What To Do With One’s Viscera

Canopic jars were an important part of the Egyptian burial ritual. They were where the internal organs of the deceased were stored. (I know, ew!) But the Egyptians believed they would need access to those organs in order to become whole again in the afterlife.

There were four canopic jars per person, and each of those were decorated with the head of one of the fours sons of Horus. Mesthi had a human head and guarded the liver. Hapy, with the head of a dog (although sometimes he was shown with an ape head) guarded the lungs. Tuamutef was the jackal-headed son who guarded the stomach, and Qebhsennuf used his fierce hawk head to guard the intestines.

In addition to that, the four jars were protected by four goddesses as well; Isis, Nepthys, Neith, and Serket.

Honestly. It’s hard to imagine they’d go to so much trouble over viscera!

69 Responses to “Canopic Jars or What To Do With One’s Viscera”

  1. Kiki Says:

    Yum.

  2. leximel Says:

    so… are the intestines just canned in a factory nowadays?

  3. Theodosia Says:

    ::snicker::
    No, I believe they’re kept in their original packaging until the whole ashes to ashes, dust to dust thing happens.

  4. paige Says:

    you’d think the heart would be important…

  5. Kiki Says:

    Nope, I seal my intestines into jars too. Everyone does it in my family!
    People think I’m a vampire or something, cuz my heart isn’t there, but really, I’m a mummy.

  6. Kaitlyn Says:

    Wow, I didn’t see this untill now!

    I agree.

  7. Luna Says:

    wow I haven’t been here in a loooong time.

    How did the egyptians keep track of al the gods? Seems to me like everyone would forget! I would! (I have :) )

  8. Luna Says:

    oh sorry theo I didn’t read the “new routine” stuff. I think that last comment was clutter.. and this one too. sorry :(

    Hey theo, do you think you would ever like a younger sibling? you don’t have to answer cause this is kinda idle talk.

  9. Theodosia Says:

    No no. That’s a good question, Luna! And Henry and I do get on much better than we used to. Ever since I almost lost him to that beastly influenza the Serpents of Chaos unleashed, I’ve been rather more fond of him. So yes, I do like my younger sibling. Especially when he’s away at school and not annoying me.

  10. Ahsoka Says:

    wow i never realized it but i spelled my name wrong

  11. Kaitlyn Says:

    Hello, Theo, and everyone else!

    Theo, do you have any updates on TatSoC? I’m sorry to ask again, but it seems that ANY SECOND a studio will buy it. And I want to be in it…but..we all know that’s never going to happen.

    Hey, if heiroghlyphics are pictures
    and words are what they say,
    Then why is there a mystery
    In deciphering them, anyway?

    Sorry, I love to write poems. And read. And write. It’s no wonder I discovered Theo. ;)

  12. Luna Says:

    Oh sorry theo I meant, like would you want another younger sibling? like a baby sister or brother?

    Well that’s the thing with sibs, I guess. You love them or hate them but you have to live with them (well not you Theo really because he’s at school all the time, right?) so you have to deal with them anyways. :D

  13. Kaitlyn Says:

    Hmm…I’m not sure you’d hate them, Luna, more like get angry at…

    Theo, I still don’t have the book, not to complain or anything. Sorry. Just me and my good old friend impatience.

    Does anyone have an Idea for another contest? Well, maybe it’s a bit early, but…

  14. Theodosia Says:

    I’m sorry, Kaitlyn. I don’t know what to say. It was mailed Tuesday.

    And probably no contests for a few weeks until I finish up Theodosia III! Must save all my brain cells for that!

  15. Kaitlyn Says:

    Oh…oh YEAH. Theo, how long does it take to write a book the size of TatSoc?

    Guys, here’s an AWESOME link if you just happen to like the golden compass. Watch the trailer! You’l LOVE IT, it’s so awesome. :

    http://www.goldencompassmovie.com

    I been in touch with Dakota (aka the actor who plays Lyra) lately. By the way Kyra, has she written back to you yet?

    Hope you enjoy it! I’ll try to look for some more interesting links if you want while R.L.’s making Theodosia III! :)

  16. Kaitlyn Says:

    Plus, I forgot to add, make sure find your Daemon and report back to me!

  17. Kiki Says:

    Oh, goshdarnitblastitohmygoshwhyfieryblazes, I forgot to write to her.

  18. Kiki Says:

    My daemon is a male mouse named Agapius…

  19. Luna Says:

    I got a snow leopard!

  20. Kiki Says:

    French is, may I say–
    VERY HARD AND FRUSTRATING TO LEARN IF YOUR TEACHER IS THE MEANEST WOMAN ON EARTH

  21. leximel Says:

    hee hee. I am a fox. I took the test a few weeks ago… don’t remember his name!

  22. Moonflower Says:

    What is Theodosia 3 called?

  23. Moonflower Says:

    I might have to get off soon because my brother is bugging me so I’ll make this quick!

    Theo, when is the next contest going to be? Thanks!

    From,

    Your loyal fan,

    Moonflower

  24. Paige Says:

    Hi sorry guys i haven’t been on in a while but good news: I GOT A DOG!!! her name is Zoey, and she’s 6-7 months old. She’s so adorable! There’s a picture of her on this profile: http://www.gaiaonline.com/profiles/16146717 so yeah just look at all the pics and you’ll see her. oh and i’m in an art class and there’s a chance we will be making a sarcophagus so… yeah! it’ll be so awesome!

  25. Kaitlyn Says:

    goshdarnitblastitohmygoshwhyfieryblazes is right! WRITE TO HER NOW!

    By the way, Theo, I just want you to know that I got the book and everything’s cool. I love it so far! IT’S GREAT. So shocking, though. I hate V.W. if you know what I mean. HINT: Vicary……

  26. (Kiki) (Kyra) (Kiyura) Says:

    OMIGOSH PAIGE YOU HAVE A GAIAONLINE??????? I DO TOO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    okay and I am almost done the 2nd theo book !!! yay!!!
    my gaia online username is kikigemini.

  27. (Kiki) (Kyra) (Kiyura) Says:

    Oh and I just finished the 2nd Theo book……
    I WANT THE J______L TO BE MY PET!!!!
    argh

  28. Kaitlyn Says:

    Who? I don’t get it. I’m here too, you know. email me if you must.

    Did you write to her? Huh? huh? huh?

    Theo, I am STILL LOVIN IT!! :)

  29. Kaitlyn Says:

    OOOOOOOOOHHHHHHH I GET IT now. The mjcaxcnkvaml? (check your email if you want to decode)

  30. Kiki Says:

    yah yah yah

  31. Theodosia Says:

    Kaitlyn, it took me about eight months to write TatSoO, about eighteen months to write TatSoC.

    Kyra, I have a very difficult time with French, myself. And I’m sorry to hear about your evil teacher. Is she worse, do you think, than Miss Sneath or Miss Chittle?

    Hello again, moonflower! Theo 3 is called: Theodosia and the Knights of Horus.

  32. Theodosia Says:

    Yes Kaitlyn, I agree that prig Vicary Weems is vile.

    And Kyra, I don’t know that I’d call the j______l a pet, exactly. He’s more of an independent operator. ;-)

  33. Kaitlyn Says:

    Erm….Knights of Horus? I think I’ll just….look that one up.

    Beware Miss Sneath, Miss Chittle, or Miss Sharpe! The cleverness of Theodosia is apon you! You shall never be able to beat it!

  34. Kiki Says:

    Even so, I really want a pet, haha!
    No, I wouldn’t say that my French teacher is as mean as your governesses. But she is really frustrating!!
    Paige, add me on Gaia?

  35. Kaitlyn Says:

    Hey everyone! I am still lovin the Alethiometer! If you don’t know what it is, look it up on google. There’ll be like 1,000,000 hits or SOMETHING close to that.

    Sorry, don’t mean to be random, but…hey, I have my likes and dislikes….. :P

  36. Luna Says:

    Oh you are driving me crazy with the TatSoc talk! Argh!

  37. Moonflower Says:

    Hello, everyone! I’m freezing to death in Canada right now! I hope everyone else is having a pleasant evening too! Theo, thanks for telling me the name of the third book.

  38. Kaitlyn Says:

    Guess what its snowing over here!!! Yeayyyy!! :D

  39. Moonflower Says:

    It already snowed here, before Halloween.

  40. Kaitlyn Says:

    Whoa. That’s COLD.

    Look look look look they changed the site!

    http://www.goldencompassmovie.com

  41. Lunella Says:

    I love u theo so much!!!!! :)

  42. Lunella Says:

    I love u all :D

  43. Kiki Says:

    so lunella is luna rite???

  44. Luna Says:

    No, I’d say it’s Luna. It’s not me, by the way. no joke.

    I wish it’d snow here! I love snow!

  45. Theodosia Says:

    Why thank you, Lunella. I’m, er, fond of you, too.

  46. Moonflower Says:

    I need cheering up.

  47. Kaitlyn Says:

    Well. Hi Lunella!It’s cold cold cold over here! What’s new?

  48. Theodosia Says:

    Poor Moonflower. Why do you need cheering up?

    Here’s hoping you have a better day soon!

  49. Moonflower Says:

    I got braces. :(
    And this girl bullies me and all the other kids won’t hang out with me cuz they’re scared of her. :( :( :( :(

  50. Theodosia Says:

    Ooo. I HATE bullies with a white hot passion! Is there anyone else this bully picks on? Because maybe she would like a friend, too, and you guys could band together for protection.

    And I’m so sorry about the braces! :-(

  51. Kaitlyn Says:

    Braces aren’t that bad. I bet you look lovely, Moonflower! Just like your name! :)

  52. Moonflower Says:

    I do NOT look lovely. And they ARE that bad.

  53. Moonflower Says:

    I know I sound like a sulky little kid, but really, has any1 here ever had braces? They are different than normal braces, they make my lower lip stick out and it looks weird. Any advice?????????????????

  54. Claire Says:

    My friend Jayne had braces. Just be careful! She ripped the inside of her lip a lot when she talked fast. Another girl, Rachael, had braces, and you know those littlest pet shop things? They had magnets on the bottom and she stuck them to her braces. Then a girl name Caelan copied her, then a boy name Reed, then almost everyone was sticking those little things to their braces! It was kind of weird when people were walking around with plastic animals sticking otu of their mouths…

    I think I’m going to get a retainer because my bottom teeth are so crooked. But maybe when I’m older, maybe in two years when I’m ten.

  55. Paige Says:

    hi sorry i haven’t been on for a while anyway we didn’t do the sarcophagus in art because the older kids were doing a Chinese clay box and the teacher said that “there isn’t enough white clay” but i think that was a false statement because before we made our primitive pots out of red clay she gave us white clay to experiment with so… i think there probably was enough clay… also i heard that there was emailing to Dakota… WHAT IS HER EMAIL?!?!?!?!?!?! *hyperventilates* also (again) my daemon is an ermine named Brynn and guess what? LYRA FALLS IN LOVE!!! yeah i read the last book :D so that’s my super-long comment bye!!!

  56. Paige Says:

    oops sorry if i gave away the love part to anyone who’s reading the amber spyglass but i won’t say who it is (unless it’s obvious…)

  57. Shayda Says:

    Wow. I haven’t been here in a LONG time. Anyway, we just studied Ancient Egypt and mummification in History. =]

  58. Theodosia Says:

    And you already knew all about it, Shayda, because you’d read my book! :-)

  59. Sophia/Sophie Says:

    Hello everyone

  60. Sophia/Sophie Says:

    Hello everybody

  61. Sophia/Sophie Says:

    Where is everybody?

  62. Vanessa Says:

    Well I’m here Sophie.Hey Theodosia when do you might think TatKoH will be done?Plus,I think the next contest should be thinking what TatKoH will be about and say what TSoC are up to.So Exciting!BYE!

  63. Vanessa Says:

    Forgot to add that the winner is the person who gets closest to what thbooks about.

  64. Annabella Says:

    What and where did they keep canopic jar for muumies that are dead or have died :)
    ~Bella

  65. Greek Girl/Athena Says:

    Question: how do you find your “Daemon”?

  66. Beth Says:

    hey guys. Im new to this online chat thing.I’m in the middle of the first book so don’t tell too much about the series. theo’s awesome. :)

  67. Anaya Says:

    Well Beth I am might be answering this a little late, but the series is DYNAMITE!!! I have the entire series and I’m putting it right next to my favorite series of all time: Harry Potter!!!!!!!

  68. Faith Says:

    When is the fifth book coming out!!!

  69. R.L. Says:

    Book Five does not have a scheduled pub date yet, Faith. It will probably be another year or two.