Egyptian Book of the Dead

(ca. 1569–1315 BCE)

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The compilation of texts and figures that the world knows as the Book of the Dead was known to the ancient Egyptians as the “Spells for Going Forth by Day.” The original title is descriptive of its purpose. The texts and images constituting the Book of the Dead were intended to enable the deceased Egyptian to make a successful transition to the next life at death and to return to the world of the living—“go forth by day”—when he so desired. By being buried with a copy of the Book of the Dead,...