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 […]
A research team led by the University of Bristol has found proof that dairy farming was practised in Saharan Africa 7,000 years ago. Chemical and isotopic analysis of fatty acids taken from unglazed Libyan pottery dated to the 5th millennium BC, revealed that dairy fats were processed inside the vessels. Evidence for domesticated cattle in this region […]
Flinders Petrie, an established Egyptologist, excavated three prehistoric sites in Egypt for the Egypt Exploration Fund during the 1890s
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 […]
Humans used fire a million years ago – more than 300,000 years earlier than previously thought, according to a team led by Michael Chazan of the University of Toronto and Liora Kolska Horwitz, Hebrew University, whose findings are published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. Excavation at Wonderwerk cave in South Africa […]
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 […]
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.
The Garamantes of Fezzan: barbaric hut- and tent-dwelling nomads, or a civilisation of wealth and power?
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 […]
Libya’s heritage is in danger of being overlooked, warned Dr Hafed Walda, Libyan archaeologist at King’s College London and international advisor on Libyan heritage. At a session organised by the Society for Libyan Studies, Walda called for international support to help secure the country’s national heritage. He went on to say that, understandably, international aid […]
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 […]
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.