Monday, March 21, 2016

Ancient Egypt this week: Of sex, wine labels, and the mummy zoo

Egypt’s zoo museum features mummified animals through centuries

At one of the sides of the Giza Zoo in Egypt, the Zoological Museum appears as a medium-sized short white building. The front does not suggest the inside large main hall with a dome-like ceiling, the side showrooms and the other two floors that contain mummified animals from the modern age back to the time of Egyptian pharaohs.

Here's a review of the zoo, which was right across the street from my hotel in Cairo. Sadly, it was closed while I was there, but I could peer into it from my 10th floor room.

Statuettes of ancient Egyptian gods unearthed in Delta

During a excavation mission carried out at the Graeco-Roman cemetery in Tel Al-Tabla archaeological site in Dakahliya governorate, a collection of statuettes of ancient Egyptian gods has been unearthed.


While we may still need to decode a wine label in order to understand all of the vital information it’s imparting, we have to admit that the label is a very convenient invention. It’s quite hard to imagine what we’d do if we were uninformed about the wine inside the bottle. Without the label, there’d be no way to identify the grapes used to make the wine, where the wine was made, who made it, or its vintage. It would also be difficult to determine which wine was worth more than another, making trade nearly impossible. Which is exactly why the ancient Egyptians invented the wine label.

How Yorkshire archaeologists are helping to give a new lease of life to Egypt’s ancient capital

ARCHAEOLOGISTS from Yorkshire are playing a pivotal role in giving a new lease of life to the ruins of the capital of Ancient Egypt.

The team from York University are part of a major scheme to regenerate the site at Memphis which for many centuries was Egypt’s capital.

Also some different photos from this project in  A new beginning for Egypt’s ancient capital.

Sekhmet statues and Amenhotep III discovered

The site of Amenhotep III funerary temple at Kom El Hitan on the West Bank in Luxor still has a lot to offer.

The European-Egyptian mission working at the site of Kom ElHitan directed by Dr. Hourig Sourouzian has unearthed a number of Sekhmet statues, parts of other statues and the middle part of a statue of Amenhotep III.

The Meaning of Sex: Ancient Egypt

Sex in ancient Egypt is not your typical icebreaker, but on Friday at the University of Memphis it will be.

Liz Cummins, an adjunct professor at the University of Reno, Nevada, will talk about sexual activity in ancient Egypt at the University Center Fountain View Room at 7 p.m.

Cummins was featured in the documentary, “Sex in the Ancient World-Egyptian Erotica,” that aired on the History Channel, where she spoke about art and texts related to not only sex, but also divine birth imagery and fertility.

Picture of the week

Model Steering Oar, 2040-1648 BC, Egypt, Middle Kingdom
painted tamarisk, Cleveland Museum of Art