Equinox brings us this investigation of a mystery that is baffling Egyptologists. The case calls into question whole areas of accepted scientific fact from botany, through chemistry to archaeology. In 1992, routine tests on a mummy in a Munich museum revealed high body levels of cocaine and nicotine. But such substances were not available in ancient Egypt, coming as they do from the Americas – not, apparently, to be “discovered” for thousands of years after the passing of the Egyptian dynasties. Are the mummies fakes; were the substances from plants that have since disappeared or were there, in fact, trade routes between Egypt and South America that predate accepted chronology?
SH: When you read articles on this paper, like this one, you see things “The biggest criticism was that cocaine and nicotine could not possibly have been used in Egypt before the discovery of the New World”. Which to us, is typical in some science circles. Even though the science PROVES this in a controlled and clean environment, some science communities refuse to accept their own science.