Thebes

“The Cemeteries of Deir el-Bahri and Asasif in the Early Middle Kingdom: Recent Work by the University of Alacá Expedition to Thebes” Antonio J. Morales

Deir el-Bahri

At the beginning of July Antonio J. Morales visited the Essex Egyptology Group to tell us about the work of the Middle Kingdom Theban Project which he is the leader of. The project began in 2014 when he was working for Freie University in Berlin, and when he moved to the University of Alacá (outside Madrid) in 2017 the project continued under their sponsorship. Three-fifths of the €50,000/year needed to fund the project comes from the Spanish government, and the project must fundraise for the rest of it. To help with fundraising the project has several social media accounts (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and YouTube) to keep the project visible. Morales told us that he began with this information because he believes it important to be transparent about how the project is funded. He also believes it is important to publish their discoveries as soon as possible. As a result they… Read More »“The Cemeteries of Deir el-Bahri and Asasif in the Early Middle Kingdom: Recent Work by the University of Alacá Expedition to Thebes” Antonio J. Morales

“New Research in the King’s Valley: Amenhotep III Family Tombs in the Valley of the Kings” Susanne Bickel (EEG Meeting Talk)

In April Susanne Bickel came to talk to us at the Essex Egyptology Group about the work she and her team have been doing in the Valley of the Kings for the last decade – mostly re-excavating previously known tombs with the benefit of modern archaeological methods, but they also discovered a new tomb in 2012. She began her talk by showing us a few images of decoration from inside various Pharaoh’s tombs in the Valley of the Kings – our usual “mental image” of the place. But actually only 22 of the known 64 tombs (plus 20 “pits” ) are for Pharaohs. So that means there are around 40 of what are often called non-royal tombs, Bickel prefers to say “other tombs” because the term non-royal is misleading in English. We would say that queens, princes & princesses are also royal, and those are generally the occupants of these… Read More »“New Research in the King’s Valley: Amenhotep III Family Tombs in the Valley of the Kings” Susanne Bickel (EEG Meeting Talk)

“Hatshepsut’s Temple at Deir el Bahri” Sergio Alarcón Robledo (EEG Meeting Talk)

At the beginning of June Sergio Alarcón Robledo came to talk to us at the Essex Egyptology Group about the work he’s doing as part of the Polish-Egyptian Mission at Hatshepsut’s temple at Deir el Bahri. His talk was in two parts – first the theoretical underpinnings, then the practical work he’s been doing at the site. And after the formal talk was over he also showed us some unpublished imagery he’s been making of various tombs. Robledo started by zooming out to a very wide-angle view of the subject – he showed us a picture of a pre-dynastic burial, of a pyramid, of the temple of Montuhotep II (built at Deir el Bahri before Hatshepsut’s one), of a tomb in the Valley of the Kings. The unifying theme is that they are all ways of connecting the deceased with the cosmos. At first they just put the body in… Read More »“Hatshepsut’s Temple at Deir el Bahri” Sergio Alarcón Robledo (EEG Meeting Talk)

“Seeking Senenmut: Statues, Status and Scandal” Campbell Price (EEG Meeting Talk)

At the beginning of June Campbell Price, the curator of Egypt and Sudan at Manchester Museum, came to talk to the Essex Egyptology Group about one of the senior officials in Pharaoh Hatshepsut’s court: Senenmut. Hatshepsut ruled Egypt from 1473-1458 BCE, and she generally seemed to do things differently to her predecessors & successors. Technically she was ruling first as regent for then alongside Tutmosis III – but in reality she was the sole ruler of Egypt, surrounded by a small group of male advisors. Price made the comparison a couple of times in his talk to Elizabeth I (of England) – single woman as the ruler taking a traditionally male role, with a small collection of highly trusted male courtiers none of whom mention their wives terribly often when in the presence of their ruler. In autobiographical texts Senenmut claims to be a rags-to-riches story, but Price pointed out… Read More »“Seeking Senenmut: Statues, Status and Scandal” Campbell Price (EEG Meeting Talk)

“The Mechanisms and Practice of Egyptian Tomb Robbery: A View from Ancient Thebes” Nigel Strudwick (EEG Meeting Talk)

At the beginning of April Nigel Strudwick came to the Essex Egyptology Group to talk to us about tomb robbers. He said that the origins of this particular talk were in trying to understand why most of the Egyptian tombs are in such a chaotic mess when they’re first excavated. He started by showing us pictures of tombs that were discovered intact and tombs that had been robbed before they were discovered. There are actually very few tombs that made it to modern times without having been robbed – the two examples he showed us were the tomb of Kha and Merit in Deir el Medina, and the tomb of Sennenmut’s parents (Ramose and Hatnefer). Kha & Merit’s tomb was fairly neatly organised, with the funerary goods and meal laid out in front of the two large shroud-covered coffins. Ramose & Hatnefer’s tomb was more untidy, and had some extra… Read More »“The Mechanisms and Practice of Egyptian Tomb Robbery: A View from Ancient Thebes” Nigel Strudwick (EEG Meeting Talk)