Although animal cults are a widely recognised feature of religion in ancient Egypt, little is known about the nature of the catacombs and mummies associated with the temples dedicated to animal gods. Here the authors present a biography of the Catacombs of Anubis at North Saqqara in Egypt, from their peak activity in the Late Period to their exploitation in modern times for raw materials. This research highlights the hitherto unappreciated scale of burial practices associated with animal cults, and the industries they supported and were supported by. The evidence suggests that the animal cults played a significant economic role, both in ancient Egypt and in subsequent eras.
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