The collection of ancient Egyptian artefacts in the Archaeological Museum in Kraków consists of items originating from different sources. The oldest of the sarcophagi and at the same time one of the first Egyptological artefacts in Kraków is an object from Dynasty XXI which belonged to the wife of a priest of Amon from Karnak named Nesy-Chonsu. Sarcophagi from excavations carried out by the first Polish Egyptologist, Tadeusz Smoleński from Kraków, in El-Gamhud in central Egypt were brought to the Museum in 1907.
A part of the collection originates from joint excavations organised in 1910-1914 in Lower Nubia and Tura, east of Cairo by the Academy of Sciences in Kraków and Vienna under the supervision of Hermann Junker.
The third and the largest collection is the legacy of the “backpack museum” created during World War II with the Polish Army in the Middle East (Field Museum) by Jarosław Sagan. After the war, the collection was donated to the Polish Academy of Arts and Sciences and finally, in 1948, it was moved to the Archaeological Museum of the Polish Academy of Arts and Sciences in Kraków. It is chronologically diverse and consists of everyday objects and art of the people of ancient Egypt. The oldest artefact is a limestone statuette of a sitting man from Dynasty V (c. 2500-2320 BC), and the most recent ones include elements of Coptic tunics and sculptures from this era (3rd – 8th century AD).
The collection includes, for instance, rare grain mummies.