middle east

“Egypt’s Origins: The View from Mesopotamia and Iran” Paul Collins (EEG Meeting Talk)

At the beginning of September Paul Collins came to the Essex Egyptology Group to talk to us about the influences that Uruk culture (in Mesopotamia) and Proto-Elamite culture (in Iran) had on Predynastic & Early Dynastic Egypt. He’s not an egyptologist – his research interests include the material culture of ancient Iraq & Iran in the late 4th Millennium BCE, and the transmission of artistic forms across the Near East and Egypt. He began with a discussion of historical explanations and ideas about these influences. It begins, as so much of Egyptology does, with Petrie whose work on pottery from Naqada is still the foundation of our understanding of the chronology of Predynastic Egypt today. Petrie also worked at Koptos and Abydos – the royal tombs at Abydos date to the Early Dynastic period. They are an expression of the great power of the Egyptian state at this time and… Read More »“Egypt’s Origins: The View from Mesopotamia and Iran” Paul Collins (EEG Meeting Talk)

“Religion in the Ancient World” Glanville Study Day & Lecture 2018

This year’s Glanville Lecture in Cambridge was given by Jan Assmann who is an expert on the religion of Ancient Egypt, and to go along with the lecture there was a study day which had 6 speakers (including Assmann) who each told us about a different topic to do with religion in the ancient world. (Well, the Mediterranean/Middle Eastern portion thereof.) Glanville Study Day: “Religion in the Ancient World” “Egyptian Concepts of Cosmogony and the Origins of Philosophy” Jan Assmann The day started off with Jan Assmann’s first talk, about the theology of Ancient Egyptian ideas about the creation of the world/universe. His key point was that the Ancient Egyptians believed the world evolves from a transformation of god rather than being created by god. It is not chaos then cosmos, instead there is pre-existence which has continuity with existence. The canonical cosmogony (theory of the origin of the universe)… Read More »“Religion in the Ancient World” Glanville Study Day & Lecture 2018