Egypt

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Book review: The Pharaoh: life at court and on campaign

Garry J Shaw Thames & Hudson, £24.95 ISBN 978-0500051740   Garry Shaw’s guide to ancient Egyptian kingship is beautifully illustrated with colour photographs of sculpture, artefacts – including stunning royal regalia – and details of temples and palaces. From the role’s semi-mythological origins with Menes, the ‘first unifier of Egypt’, to its eventual extinguishing amid Roman conquest, […]

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Book Review: Women in Ancient Egypt

Barbara Watterson Amberley, £18.99 ISBN 978-1445604947 This authoritative, accessible book by a freelance lecturer in Egyptology provides a comprehensive and compelling introduction to the world of ancient Egyptian women, who seem to have enjoyed a much more equal role in society than their sisters in other parts of the ancient world. Watterson’s interdisciplinary survey encompasses […]

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Book Review: 31 BC: Antony, Cleopatra, and the fall of Egypt

David Stuttard and Sam Moorhead The British Museum, £9.99 ISBN 978-0714122748 Whatever you think about the story of Antony, Cleopatra, and the viper, think again. The legend, told and retold for centuries, is far removed from reality. As ever, truth is more fascinating than fiction. Antony was a vain, womanising lush prone to self-pity; Cleopatra […]

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Petrie at Naqada

Flinders Petrie, an established Egyptologist, excavated three prehistoric sites in Egypt for the Egypt Exploration Fund during the 1890s

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Book Review: Cracking the Egyptian Code

Andrew Robinson Thames & Hudson, £19.95 ISBN 978-0500051719 In 1922 Howard Carter could be confident that he had found Tutankhamun’s tomb, but when Giovanni Belzoni discovered the tomb of Seti I in 1817, the pharaoh was initially misidentified as ‘Psammis’. The difference was that in Belzoni’s day nobody could read hieroglyphs; this knowledge had faded […]

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Egypt: Missing manuscript

Lost fragments of an ancient Egyptian Book of the Dead have been rediscovered in Australia. On a visit to Queensland Museum, British Museum Egyptologist Dr John Taylor noticed a familiar name on one of the pieces of papyrus on display – a ‘once-in-a-lifetime discovery’, he said. Archaeologists had been searching for the missing pieces of […]

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Egypt: The Aurochs of Qurta

Five years ago, CWA reported on the discovery of the oldest rock art found in North Africa (CWA 24). Dirk Huyge and his team have been back to Egypt to re-examine the site: it seems not only are the petroglyphs even older than first thought, they may show possible contact with Europe.

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Egypt: Facing the past

Archaeologists excavating an ancient Egyptian necropolis near Aswan have come face-to-face with a high-status official buried 3,500 years ago, after uncovering his finely carved wooden sarcophagus. Elephantine (modern Qubbet el-Hawa) was a prestigious burial place for Egyptian nobles from c.2250 BC, with 40 tombs cut into its rocky cliffs. The research team, led by Professor […]

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Egypt: Peckish Mummies

Egyptian birds were expected to live on in the afterlife, just like their human counterparts, according to new research published in the Journal of Archaeological Science. Using computed tomography (CT) scanners to examine two mummified ibises and a hatchling, an international team of scientists discovered that embalmers had returned the adult birds’ gizzards filled with […]

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Egypt: Fit for a pharaoh

Working at the Egyptian Museum in Cairo, André Veldmeijer and Salima Ikram came across an old photograph illustrating a forgotten collection of ancient Egyptian leather horse-trappings belonging to the same museum. Suddenly, they had a new and exciting challenge on their hands.

Egypt: James Henry Breasted

He founded the Oriental Institute in Chicago, was the first American to achieve a doctorate in Egyptology, and his book is an enduring classic a century later. Yet few today even know his name. Here, Andrew Robinson reviews a new biography that should bring James Henry Breasted the recognition he deserves. James Henry Breasted has […]

Luxor: Rising damp

A multi-million dollar project to help preserve Luxor’s world-famous temples has resumed after being delayed for nine months by the Egyptian revolution. Subterranean water was damaging the foundation stones of Karnak, the Ramesseum, and the temples of Seti I, Merneptah, and Haremhab. Now, the USAid-funded initiative has been channelling this water into an enormous reservoir […]

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