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University of Aberdeen

Video: Cat mummy hides a small surprise

Mummified cats were a hot commodity in Ancient Egypt, but not every buyer got what they paid for. After sending one of the artifacts through a computerized tomography scan, researchers discovered a small kitten buried under layers of bandages, which they surmise was intended to help make the cat look bigger and thus fetch a higher price on the feline mummy market, according to The Scotsman.  The team also used a technique called photogrammetry, where hundreds of photographs taken from all angles of an object are sewn together into a 3D representation. The method was previously used on human organs as an anatomy study aid for medical students, and has since been adopted to digitally archive artifacts such as ancient pottery and prehistoric skulls so that students and researchers can interact with otherwise rarely handled specimens from museum collections.

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