Sunday, April 26, 2009

The Mummies of Lahun

This is a nice video on the recent find of mummies near the Lahun pyramid.

Looking Eternally Good

Here are two more particularly beautiful pictures of undisturbed mummies recently found at the Lahun pyramid.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Digital Karnak

Here is a site created by University of California. The animations of the various stages of the building of the temples at Karnak are excellent.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

A Dismantled Mausoleum

I am one of those who believes there is no burial to be found for Cleopatra VII, Mark Antony and more than likely Cesarean who's mummies would have potentially been used by Octavian's enemies including the Egyptian population as objects of veneration to destabilize Octavian's hold on Egypt.

It may have been more politically sound to have cremated all three and to have thrown their ashes into the Mediterranean.

The article has a number of fine pictures.

Monday, April 20, 2009

History of a Leader

Here is a profile on Egypt's top archaeological gun Dr. Zahi Hawass.

100 Hieroglyphs: Think Like an Egyptian

Barry Kemp
Granta Books
ISBN: 1 86207 658 8

This book is based on 100 hieroglyphs that will help one think like an ancient Egyptian The concept of the book interests me very much and is filled with plenty of literary citations from Pharaonic Egypt.

The book however is not an easy read as its title suggests it is made up of 100 small chapters causing the book to have little to no flow and for its length of 251 pages went by slowly as the read was intense. The author of this book is well respected and very knowledgeable on the subject of Egyptology but the content was an extremely dry read.

The book certainly has some interesting details but is perhaps best suited to a serious student of Egyptology rather than readers who's interest is more casual. The book is a fine addition to my library and no doubt I will use many times as solid reference material but I definitely will not read it back to front again.

Taposiris Magna

This is a video including Dr. Hawass talking about the Cleopatra and Mark Antony farce who knows maybe they will find Osiris or even Popeye!

Saturday, April 18, 2009

The Showboat

This is a very good article on the career and personality of the good Dr. Zahi Hawass.

Friday, April 17, 2009

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Update from KV63

Another season ends and perhaps the most interesting item found this year in KV 63 is the mummification bed from a jar in the tomb.

Pretty Mummies

Here some photos from National Geographic on the recent finds of mummies from Illahun.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Ancient Egypt as Represented in the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston

William Stevenson Smith, Ph. D.
New York Graphic Society
Library of Congress Card No. 60-13944

I am a huge fan of "The Giza Archives Project" and "The Boston Museum of Fine Arts" so that when I was in a used bookstore recently and found this 1960 printing by William Stevenson Smith I put aside the book I was reading and went directly to this one.

At less than 200 pages the book was a relief from the giants I have been reading recently. Ancient Egypt starts off interesting and thorough in its facts without the unnecessary depth of minutia the author's words are accompanied by a good selection of objects from the Boston museum's collection.

The chronological order of the book is fortunate as Boston's museum has one of the finest collections of Old Kingdom artifacts outside of Cairo so the book heads almost immediately into some of the museums finest masterpieces including the bust of Prince Ankh-haf and the statues of King Mycerinus.

The author then gives a good narrative of the Middle Kingdom and the museum's collection from that period including the outer cedar coffin of Djehuty Nakht considered the finest painted wooden coffin of the age and the many models found in that tomb including the extremely rare brick makers, one of only three examples ever found and though unmentioned Djehuty Nakht's head.

As a huge fan of this museum and the bulletins from the Harvard excavations from the early twentieth century I was expecting some of those great moments but was pleased that the book has plenty of details, I have not read before.

The periods of the New Kingdom, and the Late Period were well written and accompanied by some superb objects including the sarcophagus' of Kings Thutmosis I from the Valley of the Kings and that of the Nubian King Aspelta.

This book was an excellent rundown of the history of Egypt with a fine look at this most important of collections written by the finest of Egyptologists.

Take a Walk on the Wild Side

This article has some amazing images of three mummies recently CT scanned.

The Temple of Taposiris Magna

The temple is currently being investigated to locate the mummies of Cleopatra and Mark Antony. I find it hard to believe that they would be found buried together and even if they were it would politically have been more advantageous to cremate Mark Antony.

Cleopatra, on the other hand, may have been more advantageous to display in Rome temporarily!

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Wine with Herbs

This is another article on wine from the tomb of King Scorpion being spiked with herbs.

Monday, April 13, 2009

To Your Health

5000-year-old wine from the tomb of King Scorpion has been found to be spiked possibly for medicinal purposes.

Friday, April 10, 2009

Egypt: The World of the Pharaohs

Regina Schulz and Matthias Seidel
H. F. Ullmann
ISBN 978-3-8331-1037-5

This 507-page book is compiled from various authors and edited by Regine Schulz and Matthias Seidel the book is filled with lots of great photos many of which I have never seen before. The first 300 pages of the book are a chronological order of Egyptian history and filled with great details.

Unfortunately, some of the facts are off and twice it was repeated that Ahmes-Nofretari was the wife of Amenhotep I when in fact she was his mother. The book is certainly extensive and covers numerous aspects of ancient Egyptian life including its temples, its tombs, burial practices and the archaeology involved in the discovery of its monuments.

The book is in depth but to a certain degree too in depth and though I found it interesting to hear the quarrying was not conducted by wetting wood wedges so that they would expand until the Romans I found too many subjects were not explored with any depth.

With my personal interests being mummies there were some great images but too few and the subject was mostly the same old thought, can anyone talk about Egyptian mummification without mentioning what Herodotus said late in Egyptian history. Everyone else tells the same story.

The book was long and intimidating with perhaps the best part being the images and though I did find it a little tedious I would recommend it if for nothing else than definitely for the images.

The book would have had a better impact on me with more of a concentration on certain subjects and less on an overall view.

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Mummy in the Golden Mask

Russian archaeologists have found mummies wearing golden masks in Egypt's Fayum.

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Tombs of the Kings of the First Dynasty

Here is an article on the burial of the kings of Egypt's first dynasty the article mentions the sacrifices of those kings courtiers to serve them in the afterlife.

One Man Rule

A national strike has been much hindered by the overwhelming presence of the police as Egyptians try to gain a more democratic government not based on the rule of the Mubarak's

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

The Tomb of Montuemhet

The tomb of this Governor has long been known however the sarcophagus has never been found so there is hope that with technology the Governor may some day come to light.


A nice article on recent work on artifacts at The Walters Art Museum to prepare them for the upcoming exhibition.