Archaeologists working in Egypt in December 2021 found the remains of three ancient Egyptians who were buried with tongues of gold.
The remains found were of a man, a woman and a 3-year-old child, according to LiveScience.
The bones were in two tombs. In one tomb, which had been opened and raided by grave robbers, the bones of the woman and child were found in a limestone sarcophagus.
The man’s grave had not been disturbed.
“This is very important because it’s rare to find a tomb that is totally sealed,” said Esther Pons Mellado, co-director of the archaeological effort, according to The National.
The man’s tomb contained amulets and about 400 ceramic funerary figurines.
The tongues date from the Roman period in Egypt, which began in about 30 B.C., The National reported. However, the tombs date back to 525 B.C.
The graves were found in what was the ancient Egyptian city of Oxyrhynchus, near the current community of El Bahnasa, which is about 100 miles south of Cairo.
Earlier in 2021, archaeologists found gold tongues at a burial site along Egypt’s Mediterranean coast.
According to Science Alert, the Egyptian Ministry of Tourism and Antiquities has theorized that golden tongues were given to the dead to allow them to speak to Osiris, the Egyptian god of the dead and the afterlife.
The site noted, however, that the tongues remain a bit of a mystery. It is unknown why only some mummies were buried with them.
“Maybe a golden tongue represents a line to the light, even in the cold darkness of the netherworld. Without more evidence, all we can do is speculate. Their golden tongues are clearly trying to communicate something, but all that we hear now is silence,” Science Alert added.
One website noted that the Egyptian Book of the Dead references the practice.
The site said Egyptians believed that putting gold foil on the tongue of a dead person allowed the person to breathe, eat and speak in the afterlife.
This article appeared originally on The Western Journal.