I'm a freelance writer, blogger and animal wrangler living in Brisbane's western suburbs. Many of my stories offer great giveaways to readers - subscribe to hear about them first.
Tomb raider for history buffs
A mummified chicken masquerading as a hawk, King Tut's favourite board games and lessons in how to tie-your-own toga will be among the drawcards at The University of Queensland's RD Milns Antiquities Museum these September school holidays.
Among the items on display will be a mummified hawk which dates to around 330 BC, but it's not quite what it seems, says Jessica Dowdell, the museum's outreach officer.
Depicted on the outside is Horus the Hawk god closely associated with King. "However, scientific investigation has shown that the mummy is actually wrapped up chicken bones!"
Magnificent mummy masks and other exhibits are set to step off the pages of history books and onto plinths these school holidays. Image courtesy RD Milns Antiquities Museum.
Collected by the Museum's first Director Dr Bruce Gollan, the identification of our Mummy mask remains a mystery, Dowdell explains. "We're unable to tell from the mask itself who would have been buried in this mask and whether they were male or female."
Previously reviewed by Weekend Notes, the RD Milns Antiquities Museum supports and promotes the study of the Greek, Roman, Egyptian and Near Eastern civilisations through their material remains.
A portrait head of Aphrodite, the Greek goddess of love, is another feature of the collection, while the Funerary Stele of Vitalinis is dedicated to a young girl who died a few days before her ninth birthday. The monument was dedicated by her parents who loved her, fecerunt parentes pientissimi Vitalinis. "She held no position in the Roman world ... (but) her parents went to considerable expense to ensure she was remembered and loved," Dowdell says.
Museum-goers will also be able to see what an Egyptian make-up case looked like and try their hand at some of King Tut's favourite board games - found by Howard Carter when he discovered the tomb. "The game we will have for kids to join in on is Senet (while) another game that we know of is called Hounds and Jackals. Visitors will also be able to play Merels, a Roman game similar to noughts and crosses."
Another popular element of the exhibition will be the opportunity to try on a toga for size.
Togas are a symbol of manhood of being able to participate in political life," Dowdell says. "A boy would generally receive a toga around his 16th birthday."
Entry to the Museum is free and all age groups are welcome.