Das Zoologische Forschungsmuseum Alexander Koenig

ist Mitglied der Leibniz-Gemeinschaft

Link zur Leibnizgemeinschaft

Rediscovery of the type series of the Sacred Shrew, Sorex religiosus I. Geoffroy Saint-Hilaire, 1826

AutorInnen: 
Woodman, N., Koch, C., Hutterer, R.
Erscheinungsjahr: 
2017
Vollständiger Titel: 
Rediscovery of the type series of the Sacred Shrew, Sorex religiosus I. Geoffroy Saint-Hilaire, 1826, with additional notes on mummified shrews of ancient Egypt (Mammalia: Soricidae)
Autor/-innen des ZFMK: 
Org. Einordnung: 
Publiziert in: 
Zootaxa
Publikationstyp: 
Zeitschriftenaufsatz
DOI Name: 
https://doi.org/10.11646/zootaxa.4341.1.1
Keywords: 
ancient Egyptian history, animal mummy, Crocidura olivieri, Crocidura pasha, Crocidura religiosa, embalming practices, taxonomy
Bibliographische Angaben: 
Woodman, N., Koch, C., Hutterer, R. (2017): Rediscovery of the type series of the Sacred Shrew, Sorex religiosus I. Geoffroy Saint-Hilaire, 1826, with additional notes on mummified shrews of ancient Egypt (Mammalia: Soricidae). - Zootaxa 4341 (1): 001–024; https://doi.org/10.11646/zootaxa.4341.1.1
Abstract: 

In 1826, Isidore Geoffroy Saint-Hilaire described the Sacred Shrew, Sorex religiosus [= Crocidura religiosa] from a series of 22 embalmed individuals that comprised a portion of the Italian archeologist Joseph Passalacqua’s collection of Egyptian antiquities from an ancient necropolis near Thebes, central Egypt. Living members of the species were not discovered until the beginning of the 20th century and are currently restricted to the Nile Delta region, well north of the type locality. In 1968, the type series of S. religiosus was reported lost, and in 1978, a neotype was designated from among a small collection of modern specimens in the Natural History Museum, London. Our investigations have revealed, however, that the type series is still extant. Most of the specimens used by I. Geoffroy Saint-Hilaire to describe S. religiosus still form part of the Passalacqua Collection in the Ägyptisches Museum, Berlin, Germany. We summarize the taxonomic history of S. religiosus, review the history of the Passalacqua collection, and explain why the type series was thought to have been lost. We designate an appropriate lectotype from among the original syntypes of S. religiosus in the Ägyptisches Museum. Our examination of the shrew mummies in the Passalacqua collection also yielded a species previously unrecorded from either ancient or modern Egypt: Crocidura pasha Dollman, 1915. Its presence increases the number of soricid species embalmed in ancient Egypt to seven and provides additional evidence for a more diverse Egyptian shrew fauna in the archeological past. Finally, we provide details that will assist in better understanding the variety of mummification procedures used to preserve animals in ancient Egypt.

Ansprechpartner

ehem. Kustos und Abteilungsleiter
Archiv ZFMK
+49 228 9122-261
+49 228 9122-212
r [dot] hutterer [at] leibniz-zfmk [dot] de