Golden funeral mask of king Tutankhamun
Golden funeral mask of king Tutankhamun (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Funerary Mask

A funerary mask is a mask made to cover the face of a mummy. Funerary masks and other facial coverings for mummies emphasized the ancient Egyptian belief in the fragile state of transition that the dead would have to successfully transcend in their physical and spiritual journey from this world to their divine transformation in the next.

Found only in countries that practiced mummification,they range in quality and design. The earliest ones were made from a wood that was treated to preserve it and over time became more complicated and expensive, becoming more ornate and decorative. The most famous is the one made for Tutankhamun. The purpose of the mask was multiple, the main one being to assist in the preservation of the body after death,with some being used by living people in religious ceremonies.

The mask had embellishments with paint, using red for flesh tones of males and yellow, almost pale tones for female. The more details the mask had, the greater the cost and the greater the skill required.

Hook & Rumors

  • Someone who puts on a funerary mask can hear the last words of the person it was made for.
  • A second mask that resembles the one for Tutankhamun has been discovered. It appears to be genuine.
  • A billionaire wishes to commission a funerary mask for when they pass away and has asked for submissions.
  • One mask has been discovered in a location that suggests it is in almost 1,000 years older than the first “official” mask discovered and is a much higher quality.
  • A mask rumored to have been made for a high priest of Anubis, on display in the British museum has gone missing, with no signs of damage to the display.


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