Ancient Egypt Today

Ancient Egypt Today


Everyone knows of the story about the discovery of Kings Tuts tomb. Now the whole story is to be shown on ITV Network. Here are all the details.

Originally posted on The Egyptiana Emporium:

The iconic mask of Tutankhamun (Source: Wikipedia).

ITV commissions four part drama Tutankhamun

“ITV has commissioned the epic and compelling story of Howard Carter’s discovery of the tomb of one of ancient Egypt’s forgotten pharaohs, the boy-king Tutankhamun.

The four-part event mini series written by leading screenwriter Guy Burt (Jekyll and Hyde, The Bletchley Circle, The Borgias) will focus on the legendary personal story of Carter, a solitary man on the edge of society who became an iconic figure and an unlikely hero.

Set against the great sweep of ochre sands, looming cliffs and baking heat of Egypt’s Valley of the Kings, the story unfolds from 1905 when Carter, an eminent British archaeologist who we meet in his early 20’s, is fervently leading an expedition. Amidst the chaos scattered across the Valley floor, Carter’s grim determination to find lost antiquities is only too apparent. He has an easy manner with…

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Posted by on August 1, 2015 in Uncategorized


Tuesday Tomb – KV23

Tuesday Tomb – KV23

Originally posted on The Egyptiana Emporium:

View of the burial chamber of KV23 (Source: Theban Mapping Project).

KV23 is the Theban tomb of Ay, the penultimate pharaoh of the Eighteenth Dynasty. Ay rose to prominence under Akhenaten and was permitted to build himself a tomb at Amarna. By this stage, he had risen to the very high rank of ‘Overseer of all of the horses of his Majesty’. He rose again to become Chief Vizier under Tutankhamun and acted as his advisor along with the General Horemheb. When Tutankhamun died without an heir, Ay took advantage of the power vacuum and quickly assumed the throne.

Scene from Tutankhamun’s tomb depicting Ay performing the Opening of the Mouth ceremony for Tutankhamun (Source: Wikipedia).

There are many theories surrounding Ay’s involvement in Tutankhamun’s death. It is widely accepted that Horemheb intended to succeed Tutakhamun but Ay managed to seize the throne instead. Horemheb finally because king…

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Posted by on July 28, 2015 in Uncategorized


Happy Day of Archaeology: Revealing Lost Stories and Hidden Voices

Happy Day of Archaeology: Revealing Lost Stories and Hidden Voices


This is one of my favourite stories from Kate Myers for DAY OF ARCHAEOLOGY

Originally posted on Bones Don't Lie:


Today is the Day of Archaeology. The goal of this day is to provide insight into the daily lives of archaeologists around the world, including professors, contract professionals, volunteers, students and more. It demonstrates the wide range of work that we do, from excavating to lab work, public outreach to research. Being an archaeologist, to me, has always meant being a jack of all trades. I spent the first half of the summer excavating on Michigan State University’s campus doing historical and public archaeology, and I’m spending the second half of my summer doing research to complete my early Medieval, mortuary and digital archaeology dissertation.

Usually for the Day of Archaeology, I share what I’m doing that day- a day in the life of a mortuary archaeologist. Today, I’m writing… a lot. My goal for today is to write a rough draft of my history of early Medieval archaeology…

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Posted by on July 26, 2015 in Uncategorized


NEWS: New excavations in the Valley of the Kings

NEWS: New excavations in the Valley of the Kings.

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Posted by on July 26, 2015 in Uncategorized


Pots and Pans of Classical Athens

The pots and pans of classical Athens illustrate the contrast between the materials used in ancient households and in our own; they also show the care taken by the ancients in making the ordinary utensils for everyday needs.

These two particulars , contrast in material and care in execution, stem from the same root: in ancient times domestic equipment was a product of the potter’s craft . Modern housewives have other materials at their service-such as steel, aluminum, the Athenian housewife depended on utensils made of clay, either turned on the wheel or built up by hand, and fired in a simple kiln. This equipment included both tableware, fired to produce that shining black glaze which was the pride of the Athenian  potters, and the unglazed or partly glazed kitchen and storage pots- saucepans,ovens, frying pans, stoves, casseroles, braziers. Even bath-tubs and other toilet fixtures, water pipes, pails and light fittings in classical times were made of pottery.

Black glazed amphorae

Ancient Greek Black glazed Amphorae

The rivalry of potters was widely known; the range of shapes shows how the demand for skill and ingenuity was answered. Moreover metal was expensive, clay cheap. The householder who might own a single metal pail would possess two dozen or more clay vessels.

This disproportion is brought out clearly in Aristophanes’ comedy Wealth of 388 B.C.., when the god himself brings good fortune to an impoverished citizen .  Not only do the supply of the staples suddenly become boundless: flour, wine, oil, perfume and fruits, but even the kitchen equipment itself is affected by the dispensation.  The following photo’s are of many objects of household use, as they appeared on Athenian tables and in Athenian kitchens. As to the ways in which these vessels were used in antiquity , a wealth of evidence has been preserved in paintings on vases of the black- figured and red- figured styles  (6th-5th centuries B..C.) frequently contemporary with the pots themselves

Further evidence on objects of daily use, and in some cases for the names of household shapes, comes from Athenian literature  especially from the comic poets of the fifth and fourth centuries B.C.. Intimate domestic detail, together with domestic disasters  provided the dramatists with the material for ridiculous but thoroughly recognizable scenes–acceptable entertainment in ancient Athens as in the modern day theatre.A number of short passages from these plays, naming various pots shown here, are quoted as captions to the pictures.

Figured and unfigured pots, glazed and partly glazed vases, course and fine ware- all were created on the potters simple wheel turned by an apprentice . At the time these pots were made, Athens had the monopoly of the export trade in vases and we can imagine that, both at home and abroad  people believed, as did Kritias the fifth-century philosopher  that the Athenians ‘invented the potter’s wheel and the well renowned pottery.

The drinking party Kylix

The Drinking Party  Kylix in Rome – The painter of The Drinking Party shown on this Kylix  emphasized   the equipment needed for such an occasion by representing the vases in a row, beneath the picture itself.

Water at the well

Water for the days needs is a primary concern in ancient Athens. The vase painter turns the humdrum task of fetching water into one of the most delightful subjects of his repertory; scenes at the well are adapted in the circular field of a cup interior; a procession of girls toward the fountain house decorates the wall of the water jar itself. No house is complete without its well. The well-mouth, of terracotta, is sometimes shaped like the top of a pithoi, sometimes formed like a drum. The jar most in use at the well is a kados (pail), either of metal or more usually of terracotta, a bail handle of rope may be fastened to the side handles.

Girls at the fountain

Girls at the fountain. Hydra in London.

The girls have stilled their chattering at the artists bidding. The comic poet, however, presents the scene as one of noise and bustle evidence of the daily routine.

‘Just now I filled my pitcher at the fountain;

It’s a difficult task,

and with the crowd and the din

and the clatter of pots

Aristophanes Lysistrata (411 B/C.)


Casseroles.  Preparing the mid-day meal demands a selection from among the cooking pots available in the kitchen. Eels, or lamb stew perhaps, will simmer in a covered pot; if there is fish to be fried a large flat bottom pan will serve; soup will be boiled in a  chytra (kettle)  set over a fire or cooking stand pushed up to the edge of the large hearth.Cooking pots

Frying pans and cooking pots.

‘Grinning up at me,

the casserole boils and

chatters to itself

And fishes leap up in

the frying pans’.  (Euboulos Giants ( ca, 385 B.C.)

Women bathing

Women Washing – The alabastron with its perfumed oil is a welcome essential to the bath, whether a wash basin on a stand or a deep tub. A stick dipped in the alabastron serves to perfume the hair.

But a moment ago I left her

soaping herself in the bath.

Aristophanes, The Lemnian Women. ca. 412 B.C.

Women washing.

Women perfuming clothes.

Olive harvesting

Olive harvesting.

Women washing clothes

Women washing clothes.







Posted by on July 22, 2015 in Uncategorized



The Painted Horn: visiting a rock art site in Somalia


For those of you interested in Rock Art. Enjoy this post.

Originally posted on British Museum blog:

Jorge de Torres, Project Cataloguer, African Rock Art Image Project, British Museum

Painted image of long-horned cow with human figure underneath, Laas Geel, Somalia (Photograph © TARA/David Coulson – image not yet catalogued) Painted image of long-horned cow with human figure underneath, Laas Geel, Somalia. (Photograph © TARA/David Coulson – image not yet catalogued)

As I look up at the rock shelter here in Somalia, several thoughts cross my mind about the beautiful pieces of rock art above me. There’s always a strange feeling when you visit for the first time a place you have been studying for a long while: a merging of expectations, recognition and, in some cases, a feeling of its being other than how one had imagined it. The first time I saw the Pyramids in Egypt, for all their greatness and despite the myriad of photos, they appeared somehow different to how I had pictured them. However, this has never been the case for me when faced with the paintings and engravings on natural rock surfaces…

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Posted by on July 22, 2015 in Uncategorized


Ten precious objects from the Wedgwood Collection | Culture24

Ten precious objects from the Wedgwood Collection | Culture24.

As you all know I have posted articles about  both Ancient and Antique pottery many times here on my blog, among which is the beautiful Wedgewood pottery. This is an appropriate update if any one wishes to go to see this collection.


Posted by on July 17, 2015 in Uncategorized


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