Ancient Egyptian pharaoh Ramesses II is one of the most famous mummies thanks to his incredibly preserved corpse – which nonetheless is missing both his penis and testes.

The ancient ruler, also known as Ramesses the Great and Ozymandias, was 6ft tall, fathered at least 100 children, and lived to the age of 90 in a time where most people died in their forties.

His extraordinary life was explained in Channel 5's new documentary Egypt's Great Mummies: Unwrapped with Bettany Hughes.

Explaining the case of his missing genitals, an expert said it's likely they just "fell off" with age.

Ramesses II is mummified and lies in the Egyptian Museum in Cairo
Ramesses II is mummified and lies in the Egyptian Museum in Cairo

Standing over his mummified remains of the amorous former pharaoh in Cairo's Egyptian Museum, she said: "It's very peculiar, he does not seem to have them, ironically.

"They probably just fell off and it does happen because dangly bits that are dry don't always... extremities fall off."

When he died, the pharaoh had bad posture, with a stooped back, dental problems, arthritis and hardening of the arteries.

Ramesses II lost his penis after death and embalming
Ramesses II lost his penis after death and embalming

Ramesses II also appears to have red hair, as well as a big bald spot on his crown, but it's thought his hair was white with age and then dyed by the pigments in the preservatives when he was mummified after his death in 1213 BCE.

Bettany says: "He's still, even if he wasn’t a natural blonde, he's probably 90 and he’s got a pretty good head of hair, bald at the top, but that's quite a lot."

Describing his lusty 66 years on the throne, with his numerous wives and concubines, she added: "We know he sired at least 100 children."

Ramesses II is sometimes believed to be a candidate for the pharaoh in The Bible's book of Exodus who was said to have persecuted Hebrews and killed newborn male Israelite children, although scholars say there is little evidence.