Monday, June 30, 2008

Saturday, June 28, 2008

Egypt in Florida

A Florida museum will be holding an exhibition of artifacts from England's Petrie museum.

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Another Award for the Good Doctor

Still yet more awards for Egypt's famed gaurdian of it's monuments this time Dr. Hawass is being praised by the people of Italy.

Friday, June 20, 2008

Ancient Coils of Rope

Rope coils found in a cave may be from a 4000 year old expedition to the fabled land of Punt.

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Grain as Currancy

Finally some pictures of this discovery from the 13th dynasty.

Laser Pyramid

Saqqara's landmark step pyramid is to be laser scanned to detect the condition of the structure but also so that in future years the process of erosion can be measured.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

To the Temple of Mut

The Brooklyn museums web page runs the dig diary for this project and is very interesting to follow along with.

Brooklyn Museum:

New Discoveries at Edfu

This article is about the recent discovery of a governors palace near Edfu.

Saturday, June 14, 2008

Mastaba of Merefnebef

This Saqqara mastaba is from the start of the sixth dynasty and in fragile condition as a result it is not open to the public.

Search for Menkaura's Sarcophagus

An ongoing article of a expedition to search for the famous sarcophagus lost in the Mediterranean in 1837.

The New Antiquities Market

This article about who and under what circumstances can collectors and museums own antiquities. The article contains nice pictures

Vanishing Pharaoh's

The potential train wreck that is Egypt's royal mummies keeps becoming more and more elusive as the answers are found so appear fine examples of previously missing or mutilated kings as in this presence others who positions seemed solid disappear from our view.

Grafton E. Smiths remarkable 1912 work Mummies Royal raised many questions in regards to the identities given the mummies be either the ancient priests of Amen or the 19th century unroller Gaston Maspero.

Mr Maspero while a brilliant egyptologist had no anatomical training and the unrolling of the royal mummies in June of 1886 was little more than the exposing of the bodies.

A quarter century later examinations done by the trained anatomists Grafton Smith pointed out problems in appearances of mummies in compared with family members or style of mummification.

Mr Smith did not have access or permission to xray the mummies with the exception of some years earlier when he accompanied Howard Carter on the xraying of the Pharaoh Thutmosis IV.

A favorite after dinner story of the charming Mr Carter.

In the M.Royal Mr Smith notes in particular the mummy of the Pharaoh Ahmosis I differs in appearance to the mummies of his father and sister.

James Harriss and Kent Weekes publication in 1980 of An xray atlas of the royal mummies revealed the mummy of Ahmosis does not fit in with that of his father ,sister and now as well his son Amenhotep I who has not been unrolled in modern times.

The liberators mummy is sadly vanishing and his mummy is noticeably missing from the line of 18th dynasty kings in the royal mummies hall at the Cairo museum. He can be seen at Luxor's mummification museum.

Mr Smith next noticed in his 1912 book that the mummy which Mr Maspero had years before identified as Thutmosis I was clearly that of a young man 18-20 years old , not old enough to have been a king who according to the historical evidence came to the throne latter in life.

Mr Harriss's xrays showed the mummy was probably a member of Thutmosis III family perhaps his brother or son.

With the pendant arms he is dismissed now by most as not being a king but a relative.

Mr Smiths anatomical study of the next king Thutmosis II was comfortable with his identity.

Mr Harriss,s xrays placed this mummy as actually being not the 2nd Thutmosis but the 1rst Thutmosis. This fit well since the ancient scribe who placed the kings name on the coffin originally began writing the name of Thutmosis I when he stopped himself and instead wrote the name of the 2nd Thutmosis .

To Accept the scribe became confused is reasonable considering the reburial of the royal dead took place over 120 years moving mummies from temple to tombs in caches.

With 4 18th dynasty kings named Amenhotep and 4 being named Thutmosis the confusion is expected.

The xrays next showed the mummy of the 19th dynasty king Seti II fit best as the 2nd Thutmosis. This has been no surprise as Mr Smith felt this mummy fit better with the facial features of the early 18th dynasty kings and not the later 19th dynasty kings.

Next Mr Harris xrayed the mummy supposed to be Thutmosis III the body laying in a coffin that was probably original to that kings burial.

A funerary shroud bearing passages from the book of the dead as well as the names of Thutmosis III was found folded on top the mummy, but beside this there were no inscriptions.

Fortunately the xrays left the mummy as being the 3rd Thutmosis.

Than the real problems began leaving this author to wonder if Egypt's Supreme Council of Antiquities regrets giving permission for the xrays.

Victor Lorets 1898 discovery of the tomb of Amenhotep II is the stuff of legends. A cache of kings with Amenhotep II lying in his own quartzite sarcophagus his name inscribed on his shroud.

This was solid unfortunately the xrays did not support the idea that the mummy identified as Thutmosis III was the father of the mummy identified as Amenhotep II.

They also showed that the Amenhotep II mummy could not be the father of the Thutmosis IV mummy.

There is no doubt that Thutmosis III son was Amenhotep II and that his son was Thutmosis IV.

The historical record is not in error the inscriptions on the mummies are wrong, and the second Amenhotep vanished.

Mr Harriss suggested the remote possibility that the Thutmosis III mummy was the father of the Thutmosis IV mummy.

This kings sarcophagus in his valley of kings tomb( kv 43) appeared to be opened by the reburial commission who stacked objects so that the lid of the sarcophagus could be removed with care.

The good condition of the Thutmosis IV mummy bares this out with inscriptions identifying the ruler on both his coffin and wrappings.

The xrays of this mummy showed that although he was not the son of the Amenhotep II mummy he was probably the father of the Amenhotep II mummy.

That turned the Amenhotep II mummy into Amenhotep III "the magnificent". A most fitting Pharaoh to end up in a place of honor in any tomb including his grandfathers.

Why the inscription on the wrapping claiming the mummy to be the second Amenhotep?

Perhaps over the many decades the reburial commission was at work they found themselves in the presence of 2 mummies one (Amen2)believed to be the 3rd Amenhotep when another badly battered body turned up with inscriptions claiming it too to be Amenhotep III.

The priest noticing they had no Amenhotep II assumed they made a mistake and attempted to correct it by placing the uninscribed mummy into the sarcophagus of Amenhotep II. Inscribing the new identity on the mummies shroud.

This leaves the battered remains labeled Amenhotep III the xrays showed that this body's father was most likely the Amenhotep II mummy.

Now Known as Amenhotep III making the remains identified as Amenhotep III actually Akenaten the hieratic Pharaoh.

This would account for the vengeance wracked upon the corpse much like that kings tomb at tel el amarna.

People loyal to the memory of that king may have rounded up the pieces of his body after vandals had destroyed the tomb fearing for the well being of his remains in the future they chose to give the kings remains his fathers identity.

Mr Harriss xrays also showed that the remains identified as Amenhotep III but now Akenaten was not the father of Tutankhamen or the Smenkara mummy found in KV55.

Kings Smenkara and Tutankhamen were either father and son or brothers and their closest ancestor being the Thutmosis IV mummy.

All is not well with this most precious collection but with the eventual use of technologies the answers will only make the royal mummies collection stronger.

Friday, June 13, 2008

Brooklyn Museums Slide Show

These wonderful nineteenth century images are beautiful. Make sure to watch the slideshow.

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Saving the Step Pyramid

King Djoser's step pyramid is to be laser scanned to aid in preserving the monument now and in the future.

Sunday, June 8, 2008

Moving Mummies

This article is about the latest mummies to be moved from the Valley of Kings tombs 21 and 15. The article has one of the best pictures of the mummy from KV 15 in years.

The mummy does not look like a King to me though there appears to be a resemblance to the early 19th dynasty Kings.

And Here:

Friday, June 6, 2008

Exploration Overview

Here is an overview with pictures of the finds from Taposiris magna and other recent discoveries.

Thursday, June 5, 2008

The Headless Pyramid

Here are some pictures of the pyramid and one of the Serapeum.

Looking for Menkaura's Sarcophagus

After the Beatrice sank to the bottom of the Medditeranian in 1837 most thought the sarcophagus was lost forever. there are now hopes of finding it and perhaps other artifacts collected be Col. Vyse.

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

New Discoveries at Saqqara

Recent discoveries around the Anubieion and a lost pyramid lat visited by Karl Lepsius in the nineteenth century

Three Finds of Importance

Here the Egypt state service reports on three recent finds.

New Website

This is a new awesome resource from Nicholas Reeves. Very interesting!

Monday, June 2, 2008

World Empires

Here is an interesting map showing the last 5000 years of conquering empires.

Sunday, June 1, 2008

Inauguration of the Temple of Dendara

Wow I do not know how I missed this story from a couple of months ago but I did, I must have been working a whole bunch.