Becoming one with Osiris, or One with Hathor
A selection of Soter-type shroud fragments in the Egypt Centre
It was during Roman Period that the body of the deceased was totally enveloped in a shroud.
This type of shroud is called a Soter-type shroud after the archytypal burial of Soter excavated in 1820. They date to about AD 100 to 150.
The type is discussed in Christina Riggs 2005 The Beautiful Burial in Roman Egypt. Art, Identity and Funerary Religion, Oxford University Press, 191-198.
Complete examples, not in the Egypt Centre include Ashmolean 1912.924
You can make out the head of the deceased as Osiris on the left and the flail he is carrying. For most of Egyptian history, the deceased had to idenify with the male-god Osiris in order to be reborn, even if the deceased was female.
EC175. Fragment of a Soter type shroud belonging to a woman. In the Roman Period the deceased women were commonly linked with the goddess Hathor, as opposed to the god Osiris in earlier periods. Here you can see the heavy Hathor wig of the woman, her breasts covered by a rosette and the Neith sign on her arm.
EC38, the bottom part of a Soter shroud showing the feet
Other Roman Period objects in the Egypt Centre
Other shrouds in the Egypt Centre