Excavations on Corsica sprang a surprise when archaeologists discovered a set of steps descending into the ground. Work at the site, undertaken in advance of a building development, had already revealed a Roman-era cemetery. The steps, though, led to a much rarer discovery: an intact Etruscan tomb. Within, the deceased lay beside grave goods that […]
Anyone visiting Egypt today must wonder how it struck travellers before our current understanding of its archaeological sites. Egyptologist Chris Naunton, former director of the historically influential Egypt Exploration Society, answers, while introducing his new book Egyptologists’ Notebooks, that ‘nowhere are its natural beauty and man-made wonders captured better than in the private scribblings and sketches of the travellers who first set out to explore it’.
Discover how a chance detail on a 19th-century map set in train a longstanding archaeological expedition at this elite necropolis, which is providing a fresh appreciation of how ancient Egyptians interacted with their past.
Archaeologists with the Egyptian-Italian Mission at West Aswan have digitally restored fragments of a very fragile painted leopard’s head from a 2nd century BC sarcophagus, discovered at the Egyptian necropolis last year. The leopard is a common symbol of power and protection in ancient Egypt, but it is unusual to see it painted on a […]
In 1898, a team led by French archaeologist Victor Loret excavated the tomb of the 18th Dynasty pharaoh Thutmose III. It was given the number KV34, though it had originally been one of the first tombs to be cut into the bedrock of Egypt’s Valley of the Kings over 3,400 years ago. The tomb is […]
Tutankhamun ruled in interesting times. His father, Akhenaten, had upended Egyptian society by venerating the sun and founding a new capital at Amarna. Doubtless he made many enemies – particularly among the powerful priesthood – along the way. Tutankhamun was left to deal with the fallout when he came to power at just nine years […]
The mysterious images on the Nasca plateau, Peru, have captured countless imaginations. But where did this tradition of planting pictures in the earth come from? A curious congregation of figures and beasts, clustered around the nearby city of Palpa, seems to have been crafted before their famous neighbours. As new survey reveals further examples of […]
It may be the royal tombs that spring to mind when we think of the Valley of the Kings, but you did not have to be pharaoh to secure space in the cemetery. More modest tombs exist in greater numbers, although the identity of many of their occupants remains a mystery. Donald P Ryan has been investigating.
The pharaohs did not lie in splendid isolation in the Valley of the Kings. While they held a monopoly on the spectacular royal tombs driven far into the bedrock, favoured individuals could also secure space in the cemetery. They had to make do with humbler tombs – often more modest than they would have expected […]
How did an Egyptian pharaoh rejuvenate after a demanding year? The annual Opet festival at Luxor was dedicated to renewing the semi-divine ruler’s lifeforce, but mortals will also benefit from a visit to the temple, as Matthew Symonds reveals. When it came to keeping up with the neighbours, Luxor temple never really stood a chance. […]
A fresh approach to a celebrated collection On 18 October 2018, the new Albukhary Foundation Gallery of the Islamic World will open its doors to visitors at the British Museum. CWA was invited to take a look behind the scenes as installation of the objects was under way. How do you tackle a subject as […]
Heliopolis had the largest boundary of any Ancient Egyptian temple, but little of this extraordinary religious complex remains visible today. As the modern Cairo suburbs advanced ever deeper into the former home of the sun god Ra, a project was set up to record the archaeology of Heliopolis before it was too late.