The widely-broadcasted event had everything from costumed performers, chariots, and full orchestras.
In a grand show of Egypt’s now-relaxed COVID protocols, the capital city of Cairo moved the mummified remains of 22 of its former rulers in a widely-covered and historic event last weekend. Called the Pharaohs’ Golden Parade, the procession brought the long line of Egyptian royalty to their new home at the National Museum of Egyptian Civilization (NMEC).
The seven-kilometer journey, which reportedly cost millions, was an absolute spectacle: costumed performers, chariots, full orchestras, beautiful gowns, and climate-controlled cases carried on trucks decorated to look like ancient boats.
To underscore just how important the day was, Egyptian president Abdel Fattah el-Sisi encouraged his citizens to watch.
“I invite all Egyptians, Egyptians and the whole world to follow this unique event, inspired by the spirit of the great ancestors, who preserved the homeland and created a civilization in which all humankind is proud, to continue our path that we started… the path of construction and humanity,” he writes in a tweet.
According to Aljazeera, the heavily-broadcasted event was part of the African nation’s efforts to attract more foreign visitors by shining a light on its ancient artefacts. Not only has tourism been hurt by the COVID pandemic (much like the rest of the world), but it is also moving away from 2013 coup d’état led el-Sisi being elected.
Since the pandemic started, there have been 204,256 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Egypt, and 12,123 deaths. While there was a spike cases in the country, numbers have went down enough for authorities to lift restrictions on open-air gatherings.
Sporting events are also back for Egypt, who hosted the World Men’s Handball Championship in January. The draw for the international competition happened to be held at the NMEC, the Golden Parade’s destination.
Located in the ancient city of Fustat, the 250,000-square-foot NMEC first opened its doors (partially) in 2017, and displays around 50,000 artefacts. Its collections are taken from the likes of the Egyptian Museum, The Museum of Islamic Art, and the Royal Jewelry Museum in Alexandria. It makes for a fitting new home for the 22 Pharaohs.
Among the rulers being transported are Seqenenre Tao (called “The Brave”) and Ramses II (who was regarded by many as Egypt’s greatest and most celebrated, and ruled for 67 years). Four powerful queen are also in the grand parade: Hatshepsut, Ahmose Nefertari, Meritamen, and Tiye. Most of these remains were discovered from excavations at the Valley of the Kings in Luxor.
“With all pride and pride, I look forward to receiving the kings and queens of Egypt after their journey from the Egyptian Museum in Tahrir to the National Museum of Egyptian Civilization,” the country’s leader continues in another tweet. “This majestic scene is new evidence of the greatness of this people, the guardian of this unique civilization that extends into the depths of histor