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For writers, it's often a Necessary Weasel: it's a lot easier to observe the society you have than to predict which way it's going to go.
This effect increases with the distance between when the work is written and the present day.
More than 300 scientists attended the Congress to share nearly 100 years of collected data on mummies.
The information presented at the meeting triggered a new surge of interest in the subject, with one of the major results being integration of biomedical and bioarchaeological information on mummies with existing databases.
Before this discovery, the oldest known deliberate mummy was a child, one of the Chinchorro mummies found in the Camarones Valley, Chile, which dates around 5050 BC.
The Medieval English term "mummy" was defined as "medical preparation of the substance of mummies", rather than the entire corpse, with Richard Hakluyt in 1599 AD complaining that "these dead bodies are the Mummy which the Phisistians and Apothecaries doe against our willes make us to swallow". The OED defines a mummy as "the body of a human being or animal embalmed (according to the ancient Egyptian or some analogous method) as a preparation for burial", citing sources from 1615 AD onward.