Definition of Canopic jar in English:

Canopic jar

(also Canopic vase)

Pronunciation /kəˌnäpik ˈjär/ /kəˌnɑpɪk ˈdʒɑr/


  • A covered urn used in ancient Egyptian burials to hold the entrails from an embalmed body.

    ‘In another little room there's the shrine which contains the Canopic vases and here are the four guardian figures of girls which Professor Breasted told me were masterpieces of art.’
    • ‘The heads of the Canopic jars represent the four sons of Horus.’
    • ‘The very rare and precious inheritance of the Museum consists in relief cippi, bucaros, Canopic vases and inscriptions.’
    • ‘Various methods of preservation were developed, the most sophisticated of which was that which used Canopic jars.’
    • ‘Amongst its most important artistic and historical exhibits are the completely-preserved contents of a princely tomb, the pediment of a temple and the world's largest collection of decorated Canopic vases.’


Late 19th century Canopic from Latin Canopicus, from Canopus, the name of a town in ancient Egypt.