The real name of this prince is unknown, the name “Pentawere” is a nickname given to him in the Turin Papyrus, a forensic record. He would probably be the heir to the harem conspiracy his mother Tiye had started to assassinate the pharaoh. Although his mother, Tiye, was the son of Queen Tyti, the heir to the throne after the pharaoh, she wanted her own son to be the successor of the pharaoh.
According to the Forensic Papyrus, Pentawer was among those on trial for his involvement in the conspiracy and had to kill himself. The mummy of Prince Pentawere, popularly known as the “screaming mummy“, was not properly embalmed. No embalming fluid was used and his body was left to embalm naturally. His mouth was open and his facial muscles were tense, making the mummy appear to be screaming. It is unclear whether he died screaming or whether it was shown after his death.
In 2012, III. A team of scientists examining the mummy of Ramses (1184-1155 BC) After Ramses’ throat was slit, he found that he died, possibly in an assassination attempt that Pentawere had helped orchestrate.
Scientists also believe that the “screaming mummy” III. They did genetic analysis confirming that he was Ramses’ son. Those who buried him then wrapped his body in sheepskin, a material that the ancient Egyptians thought was ritually impure, meaning unclean.
The Turin Criminal Record Papyrus is a manuscript documenting the trials that took place after Pentawere’s seemingly successful attempt to murder his father in 1155 BC, as modern-day scholars call it. III. Ramses and his successor IV. A group of housekeepers loyal to Ramses led the trial of large numbers of people who had allegedly aided the Pentawere and sentenced them to death or mutilation.
These conspirators included military and civil officials, women in the royal harem, and several men in charge of the royal harem. To Prince Pentawere, III. It was alleged that his mother, Tiye, who was one of Ramses’ wives, helped. In the forensic record papyrus, Prince Pentawere was brought in because his mother was colluding with Tiye when she was making plans with the women in the harem.” The papyrus reads, “The Pentawere was brought before the stewards for questioning; they found him guilty; they left him where he was; took his own life,” he says.
Exactly how Pentawe killed himself is a matter of debate among scientists, with poisoning and hanging himself (or a combination of the two) often considered the most likely methods. Susan Redford speculates that a nobleman, Pentawer, was given the option to kill himself by drinking poison, thus avoiding the humiliating fate of other conspirators whose ashes would be scattered on the streets and burned alive.
Such punishment served to set a powerful precedent, for it underlined the seriousness of their betrayal for the ancient Egyptians, who believed that a person’s afterlife could only be attained if his body was embalmed and preserved, rather than destroyed by fire. In other words, criminals were not only killed in the physical world, but also failed to attain the hereafter. They would not have a chance to survive in the next world and therefore would experience complete personal extinction. By killing himself, Pentawer could avoid the harsher punishments of death by cremation. This would enable him to embalm and pass into the afterlife.
A recent study of the remains of his mummy candidate, ‘Unknown Man E’, suggests he died by drowning or hanging. If the remains really belong to him, then he was around 18-20 years old at the time of his death.
The deceased Pharaoh III. While Ramses was initially buried in a tomb in the Valley of the Kings, his mummy was moved after his tomb was robbed. Interestingly, III. Ramses’ mummy was dumped in the same mummy store as Pentawere’s at Deir el-Bahari. The mummies of the murdered father and murderer son lay together, until the family of a man named Abd el-Rassul in the 19th century found them.
Prince Pentawere is now on public display at the Egyptian Museum in Cairo. The screaming mummy is only being displayed temporarily. The display of the mummy attracted a lot of media attention and it is not clear how long it will be on display.