The Untold Truth Of The Mummy


The Untold Truth Of The Mummy


We've all heard the stories about the curse of the mummies disturbed by either grave-robbers or archaeologists, depending on your point of view. It's usually King Tut that gets the most credit for doing the most amount of damage with his curse, and if you're even the least bit familiar with history, you'll know it's complete bunk.

It makes a great story, though, and that's part of what makes The Mummy such a creepy movie. (And one that's actually worth rebooting, for once.) But the idea of the mummy's curse isn't just misidentified as having something to do with Howard Carter, the famous "cursed by Tut" guy, but it's a lot older than the 1920s excavation of Egypt's most famous tomb.

Some Egyptologists think that the "curse" really was put in place to discourage tomb robbers, and that the idea dates back to the time the tombs were first built. But the idea came to Europe years before Carter embarked on his Egyptian endeavors, and they came in a weird sort of way. In the 1820s, the West End of London, just outside Piccadilly Circus, was the location of a weird stage show that inspired Jane Webb to write her book, The Mummy! A Tale of the Twenty-Second Century.

The show was described by Egyptologist Dominic Montserrat as being the inspiration that kick-started the idea of the mummy's curse, and it was basically a show where a very real mummy was unwrapped on stage, much to what we imagine was the combined delight and horror of an audience full of cynical city-dwellers who, up until perhaps that moment, had thought they had seen it all. That was a full century before Carter was named by popular opinion as the target of a curse, eventually leading to the development of one of our favorite movie monsters of all time.

Who says that nothing good and culturally significant ever comes out of a striptease?



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