Museum Can't Explain Why Ancient Statue Suddenly Started Spinning

By: Gawker Email
By: Gawker Email

(Gawker) - An ancient statue made as an offering to Osiris, the Egyptian god of death, that is currently housed at the Manchester Museum in England has suddenly started spinning inside its closed display case — and no one seems to know why.

A time-lapse video released by the museum shows the 4000-year-old relic of Neb-Senu slowly turning around inside its case without any apparent assistance from the outside world.

Found in a mummy's tomb some 80 years ago, the statue has been kept encased at the museum ever since.

Its current caretaker, Campbell Price, was the first one to notice the strange phenomenon, and says he first realized something was off when he found the statue askew, reset it, and then found it askew again the following day.

"In Ancient Egypt they believed that if the mummy is destroyed then the statuette can act as an alternative vessel for the spirit," Price, and Egyptologist by trade, told the Manchester Evening News. "Maybe that is what is causing the movement."

Other experts, however, remain skeptical.

"[Physicist Brian Cox] thinks it’s 'differential friction,'" Price told The Daily Mail, referring to the process by which two surfaces — in this case the statue's stone and the glass shelf, "cause a subtle vibration which is making the statuette turn." Cox believes foot traffic or vibrations from the street outside are causing the mysterious movement, but Price refutes that theory. "It has been on those surfaces since we have had it and it has never moved before," he said.


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