Cursed sarcophagi have been the subject of many legends and folklore throughout history. These stories often center around an ancient Egyptian artifact, a coffin or sarcophagus, that is said to bring misfortune and death to those who possess it.
In these tales, the sarcophagus is often believed to contain the spirit of a powerful pharaoh, priest, or other figure from ancient Egyptian mythology, who has been cursed or condemned to eternal rest. The owner of the sarcophagus is said to be plagued by terrible events such as accidents, illnesses, or even death, until the artifact is passed on to another unsuspecting victim.
There are many variations of the cursed sarcophagus story, with some adding elements of dark magic or supernatural powers to the artifact. In some versions, the curse is said to be triggered by opening the sarcophagus or disturbing the remains within, while in others, the curse is believed to be activated by simply owning or possessing the artifact.
The British Museum in London boasts a vast array of tens of thousands of unique artifacts. Despite this large number, only a handful of supernatural occurrences have been documented within its walls.
One of the most notable of these incidents is the tale of the Egyptian sarcophagus bearing the number 22,542. This piece, adorned with intricate hieroglyphics and depicting a graceful singer, was created as a tribute to the deity Amon Re.
The sarcophagus was originally discovered in a market in Thebes by travelers in the 1880s. Unfortunately, it has been linked to at least 13 instances of tragedy or misfortune, starting with those who first brought it to Europe.
A hunting accident left a man with a devastating injury, requiring doctors to amputate one of his arms. Meanwhile, his hunting companion vanished without a trace and was never found.
Desperate to part ways with the cursed artifact, the one-armed man sold the sarcophagus to merchants in Cairo. Unfortunately, the next three owners did not fare much better, as none of them lived to see old age.
Finally, the artifact found its way to London where a collector purchased it. However, he heeded the warnings of those who told him about the evil aura surrounding the object and quickly got rid of it.
The next owner of the sarcophagus had a photo taken of it, but the photographer died the following day. It is said that instead of a young and charming lady, a frightening face of an old hag gazing deeply into the camera lens emerged on the developed photos.
The next owner’s animals all perished by morning, and all the windows in the lady’s house lay in pieces on the ground. Despite receiving medical help in time to fight for her life, she fell into a deep comatose state. However, during one of her rare moments of consciousness, she quickly sold the sarcophagus that had ruined her life. After that, her condition rapidly improved, and she was soon discharged from the hospital.
The Egyptian artifact finally found its home at the British Museum in 1889, but the curse continued to claim victims. One of the two workers carrying the box up the museum’s stairs fell and broke his leg, while the other did not live to see the next week.
Legend has it that even artists have never been able to accurately capture the now infamous sarcophagus.
A number of caretakers and night watchmen complained about the evil aura surrounding the sarcophagus. One of them reported a strange apparition: a distorted, yellowish-green, wrinkled face was said to have appeared on it one night. A photographer committed suicide after developing his photos.
After the mummy was removed from the sarcophagus and transported to America, the angry spirit allegedly sank the Empress of Ireland, the ship carrying her, in St Lawrence Bay.
He was exorcised twice in 1921, and the apparition that emerged was recorded to be a flat-faced, malevolent, gelatinous-bodied ghost.
It is believed that the powerful magical powers of the hieroglyphics on the outside of the cover were triggered when the sarcophagus was desecrated by the removal of the body.
Despite these tales of terror and misfortune surrounding the cursed sarcophagus, it remains a popular exhibit at the British Museum, attracting thousands of visitors each year. Many people are drawn to its eerie history and the thrill of possibly encountering the cursed spirit themselves. However, those who work at the museum say that the sarcophagus has been remarkably well-behaved since its arrival. While some may still believe that the curse is still active, others say that the tales are simply tall stories designed to capture the imagination. Either way, the legacy of the cursed sarcophagus continues to captivate and terrify, leaving visitors to wonder if it is truly cursed or simply a creation of human superstition and fear.