These coffin texts critical to the analysis of Ancient Egyptian death and afterlife beliefs. These inscriptions functioned as guides, steering the deceased through their journey in the afterlife, containing an extensive collection of spells designed to guarantee the personal wellbeing in the subsequent life stage.

These texts are primarily found within the interiors of wooden coffins, transcribed in vertical columns of hieroglyphic characters. Their highly stylized and reoccurring forms are integral to the calligraphic style, denoting a significant transition in the development of Egyptian writing. The scribal use of cursive hieroglyphs exhibits an intentional move away from the monumental hieroglyphs predominant during the Old Kingdom.

The Coffin Texts are engraved on carefully chosen wood, emphasising the socio-economic position of the individual who could afford such items. Often borders decorate the texts, presenting elaborately designed patterns of funeral deities, offerings, and protective symbols, thus emphasizing the relationship between textual content and artistic imagery.

The Coffin Texts cover a diverse range of themes, from magical to practical spells, which contextualize Ancient Egyptian beliefs about the afterlife journey, protection, provision, and transformation. Notably, as opposed to exclusive use by the ruling class, the texts' use extends to the wider nobility, indicating a shift in religious practices and access to these spells. The variations in the texts suggest a degree of personalization, reflecting the individual preferences related to the afterlife by the coffin's occupant.

British Museum