A nobleman named Mesehti died in Asyut in about 2000 B.C. He was buried with this painted wooden model of 40 local soldiers, about two feet tall, bearing spears and shields.
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Pictures: Taking It With You—Ancient Provisions for the Afterlife
Treasures from ancient burials around the world are testaments to the belief that another life awaits us after death.
It's the ultimate mystery: What happens when the heart stops beating, the brain ceases to send and receive signals, and a person who was once full of life is said to have passed away?
Cultures around the world offer a variety of answers, many based on the idea of an eternal life—a passage through the pearly gates, a tortured future of endless fire and anguish, a continuing cycle of rebirths, or a merging with the creator.
But beliefs about the next life arose long before today's faiths took root. Throughout human history people have hoped there was something after their brief moment in the vastness of time. And for all they knew, the next world might be infinitely happier than this one.