Friday, September 29, 2017

Ancient Egypt September 29

Lots of news this week required a second edition.

Astounding Animation Glimpses Into Amarna, The Royal Egyptian City Of Akhenaten

The royal city of Amarna was a relatively ‘new’ settlement if viewed from the perspective of Ancient Egyptian history. Built almost 1,200 years after the Great Pyramid (circa 1346 BC), the entire city was actually constructed on a virgin site, on the orders of the Pharaoh Amenhotep IV – who was later known as Akhenaten. And while this urban scope was situated almost midway between Cairo (Giza) and Luxor, on the east bank of the Nile River (presently in the Egyptian province of Minya), the city both inspired and instigated various sections of the Egyptian elite – since it was dedicated to

How the Met Convinced the U.S. Government That the Temple of Dendur Belonged in New York
The Temple of Dendur in situ, ca. 1865–1885. Photo by Antonio Beato. Courtesy of the Metropolitan Museum of Art.

In the summer of 1968, a freighter set sail from the Mediterranean Sea to New York City. Stowed in its hold were canned tomatoes, maraschino cherries, wheels of cheese—and a centuries-old Nubian temple, dismantled and packed away into 640 crates for its international voyage.

These ancient sandstone blocks, 800 tons in total, were a gift from Egypt to the United States. A year earlier, President Lyndon B. Johnson had declared that the Metropolitan Museum of Art would serve as the Temple of Dendur’s new home; this month marks the 50th anniversary of that decision. For the occasion, the museum has cleaned the temple’s sandstone facade and unearthed a wealth of archival material.

Exhibit illustrates magical powers of Book of the Dead in ancient Egypt
Photo by
Jean Lachat

In ancient Egypt, you did not go to the afterlife empty-handed. The Book of the Dead, a collection of spells and charms, was there to guide you.

Starting Oct. 3, visitors to the Oriental Institute at the University of Chicago will have a unique opportunity to peruse copies of the Book of the Dead: Two 2,200-year-old papyri, each more than 30 feet long and beautifully illustrated with texts and images. They are on display in their entirety for the first time at a museum, accompanied by the mummy of a woman who lived over 2,000 years ago, as well as statues, stelae, scarabs, magic bricks, ushabtis (small funerary figurines) and other artifacts.

6 of Egypt's most fascinating archaeological discoveries

For numerous reasons, Egypt is a fascinating country.

In terms of history, it's one of the richest countries in the world and there is no shortage of places to visit to experience that wealth.

Egypt thrived for thousands of years as an independent nation whose culture was famous for great human advances in every area of knowledge, from the arts and sciences to technology and religion.

What it's like to crawl inside a 3,500-year-old Egyptian tomb

A man in a gray robe and white headscarf brushes the dust, undisturbed for thousands of years, off a human skull, one of many messily discarded by grave robbers.

"They were searching for gold and jewelry, and when they didn't find it they just threw everything over here," says Ali Farouq al-Gaftawi, the veteran foreman at the excavation at Draa Abu Al-Naga, a barren desert hillside overlooking the lush, green Nile Valley.

Grand Egyptian Museum receives artefacts ahead of launch

Ten ancient Egyptian artefacts, including a part of the Sphinx’s beard, were moved to the new Grand Egyptian Museum in Cairo on Wednesday.

The new museum is set to be the world’s largest archaeological museum when it opens in 2018.

“Ten heavy artefacts are being moved from the Egyptian museum in Tahrir to the Grand Egyptian Museum. These artefacts will be displayed near the grand staircase which will lead to all of the main exhibition halls,” said Tarek Tawfiq, General Supervisor, Grand Egyptian Museum

How were the Egyptian pyramids built? Why and when were they constructed, how many are there and who built them?
Image-Getty Contributor

THEY'RE one of the most impressive sights on Earth, and the only remaining Ancient Wonder of the World. Here's everything you need to know about the incredible Egyptian pyramids

Clues to ancient past—baby mummy, dinosaur skulls scanned

The mummified remains of a 7-month-old baby boy and pieces of skull from two teenage Triceratops underwent computed tomography (CT) scans Saturday, Sept. 16, at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis, in hopes researchers could learn more about the ancient past. The project is a collaboration between the Saint Louis Science Center and the School of Medicine.

Sphinx, Baboon and Cat Statues Found in Ancient Egyptian Burial

After years of being washed, perfumed and fed in ancient Egypt, the statue of a revered Egyptian deity was given a proper burial with other "dead" statues more than 2,000 years ago, a new study finds.

Ancient Egyptians buried the statue of the deity Ptah — the god of craftsmen and sculptors — with other revered statues, including those of a sphinx, baboon, cat, Osiris and Mut, in a pit next to Ptah's temple.

Kinross Wolaroi School musical takes audiences back to ancient Egypt

Year 5 and 6 students from Kinross Wolaroi School have put on a singing and dancing spectacular as part of their school music and there is one show left of Slaves.

Year 6 teacher Romko Hordynsky has been writing and directing the schools musicals for about 30 years and this year was no different.

Along with writing the plot, Mr Hordynsky also created the musical score for the latest production, Slaves, set in Ancient Egypt.

Under the Protection of the Gods painting by 'Howard Carter 1908'

Tuesday, September 26, 2017

Ancient Egypt September 26

Kyphi incense: Things that delight in the night

I recently discovered a pot of kyphi incense in Glastonbury in the delightful shop Starchild. I had heard about kyphi before but had never used it. It has the most amazing scent! It smells sweet, earthy and provocative.

Kyphi (kapet) is an ancient Egyptian incense blend burnt for use in ritual, healing and within the home. It was believed to be made from ‘things that delight in the night’. Although recipes for a similar incense were also created in ancient Greece.


The tomb of Pharaoh Psusennes 1 ruler of the 21st dynasty, he who reigned from 1036 to 989 BCE, is surely one of the most underrated discoveries in the scheme of things at Egypt.

The Kings and Pharaohs of Ancient Egypt surrounded themselves with treasures, mostly fashioned from gold.

Remembering a Pharaoh

The life of the ancient Egyptian Pharaoh Amenhotep II is being relived in a major exhibition in Milan, reports Nevine El-Aref.

It seems that the shadow cast over Italian-Egyptian relations is about to disappear. The ambassadors of both countries have returned, and the ancient Egyptians will be spending the autumn in Milan in “The Extraordinary Discovery of Pharaoh Amenhotep II” exhibition inaugurated last week at the city’s Museum of Cultures (MUDEC).

Hawass to write opera about Tutankhamen
Tutankhamen - Wikipedia

Famous Egyptian archaeologist Zahi Hawass announced on Monday, September 11, during his speech in the book signing ceremony of the Italian novel Il loto e il Papiro “The Lotus and Papyrus”, that he will write a special opera pertaining to the life of the great Pharaonic King Tutankhamen on the occasion of the centennial of the discovery of the king’s tomb.

The special ways ancient Egyptians educated their children

Ancient Egyptians gave special attention to educating their children.

Archeologist Ahmed Amer explained that fathers taught their children various basic educational principles. For example, farmers' sons received a formal education, teaching them how to plant seeds and harvest fruit.

Deconstructing Kohl

Although it varied from region to region, the traditional method of making kohl involved grinding the minerals galena or stibnite into a fine powder and blending with fat to create a lustrous black paste.

In ancient Egypt, from about 3,100BC, the upper lids of the eye were painted with black galena, while the lower lids were decorated with a paste of green malachite.

Sir Francis Grenfell, Governor of Malta (1899-1903)
The Grenfells at the pyramids. Lady Grenfell stands by the camel’s head. Photo: John Gibbons Studios

Grenfell was a man of deep sympathies and took a keen interest in the lives and history of the people around him. While in Egypt he was engrossed by ancient Egypt and developed a name for himself as an informed Egyptologist and antiquary. He was involved in a number of excavations and amassed a collection of ancient artefacts which he called his ‘antikas’.

There and (eventually) back again: a tale of three papyri

It’s been a busy month for us at the Petrie Museum, not only gearing up for the start of the autumn term but also preparing object loans for upcoming exhibitions..........We also hold a world-renowned collection of papyrus, which is the focus of our ongoing Papyrus for the People project funded by Arts Council England. We have loaned papyri to three very different exhibitions this September, which each tell fascinating stories of life and death in ancient Egypt.

Edfu Temple Reconstruction

Interior of the tomb of Thutmose III (ca. 1481-1425 BC), Valley of the Kings.
From the Egypt Museum Facebook page.

Friday, September 22, 2017

August Reads

The Five Daughters of the Moon by Leena Likitalo

Synopsis: Inspired by the 1917 Russian revolution and the last months of the Romanov sisters, The Five Daughters of the Moon by Leena Likitalo is a beautifully crafted historical fantasy with elements of technology fueled by evil magic.

The Crescent Empire teeters on the edge of a revolution, and the Five Daughters of the Moon are the ones to determine its future.

My take:  I'm a sucker for the Russian Revolution even though I know it always ends badly. Take note: If you're looking for a literal retelling of the tale of the last Romanovs, this book will surely disappoint you. Some reviews crawl through the Romanov minutiae and enumerate the discrepancies, such as Daughters of the Moon makes no mention of the ailing son. There is an ailing youngest daughter. . . . so like I said, it's just not literal. If you want a good fantasy  that uses the Romanov story as a jumping off point, however, this novella will satisfy your longing.

As the description says, it is rather beautifully crafted, and the lore of both the Russian Revolution and the fantasy/magical elements  result in great world-building. Likalto does an excellent job of invoking Rasputin as an antagonist without making him a carbon copy of the mad monk. Each of the sisters have a couple of chapters that tell the story from their point of view, and the author does it nicely. I'm not so sure, however, that all five sisters were needed. The middle three sisters didn't seem unique enough, and I often confused them; that is often true of the historical Romanov sisters as well.

The novella has a rather nice steampunk ambiance with mechanical peacocks, lamps fueled by animal souls, and machines that require human souls to work. There is also magic, although that aspect is not a fleshed out as I might like it to be.

All in all, I liked this novella. It has a realistic ambivalence in which you can root both for those who need the revolution and those who suffer from its consequences. The elegiac tone reminded me of the non-fiction The Romanov Sisters, which I read a few years ago. I will definitely read the sequel.

Synopsis: Firstborns rule society. Secondborns are the property of the government. Thirdborns are not tolerated. Long live the Fates Republic.

On Transition Day, the second child in every family is taken by the government and forced into servitude. Roselle St. Sismode’s eighteenth birthday arrives with harsh realizations: she’s to become a soldier for the Fate of Swords military arm of the Republic during the bloodiest rebellion in history, and her elite firstborn mother is happy to see her go.

Televised since her early childhood, Roselle’s privileged upbringing has earned her the resentment of her secondborn peers. Now her decision to spare an enemy on the battlefield marks her as a traitor to the state.

My take: First off, let me say I loved this book. Some compared it to Hunger Games, and it's a fair comparison. Like Katniss, Roselle is a great kick-ass heroine in a genre where kick-ass heroines are becoming a dime a dozen. Like Katniss, we actually see what went into the making of the kick-ass part, whereas in many books we are just supposed to accept it when there is no reason to do so.  Unlike the tributes of the Hunger Games, however, these contestants aren't necessarily from the poor and downtrodden class, but often the ruling class itself, which causes its own set of problems. This book took what is becoming a rather tired trope and breathed some new life into it.

Clearly the book is dystopian, but in the vein of Red Rising instead of a completely shattered world. It certainly takes the whole idea of "the heir and the spare" to  new levels. It might even be an interesting treatise on what it's like psychologically to be the second born.

Above all, the story was engaging, well-paced, and had some good plot twists.

The House of Mirth by Edith Wharton

Synopsis:Raised among New York’s high society, Lily Bart is beautiful, charming, and entirely without means. Determined to maintain the extravagant lifestyle to which she is accustomed, Lily embarks on a mission to marry a wealthy man who can secure her station. However, the businesslike proposals from her many suitors remain fruitless, and her thoughts keep returning to the one man she truly loves. Bedeviled by debt, betrayal, and vicious gossip, she is forced to confront the tragic cruelty just beneath the surface of the Gilded Age.

My take: I sometimes think of Edith Wharton as America's dark Jane Austen. The storys often start at the same place: woman from "good" society doesn't have the means (aka money) to maintain her position in that society.  While neither author spares  society their castigation for creating the problem, Austen heroines usually turn out just fine. Wharton heroines (and heroes for that matter) rarely do. Lily Bart may be one of the saddest and silliest protagonists ever. I read this novel every few years as a cautionary tale.

Scythe (Arc of a Scythe Book 1) by Neal Shusterman

Synopsis:Two teens must learn the “art of killing” in this Printz Honor–winning book, the first in a chilling new series from Neal Shusterman, author of the New York Times bestselling Unwind dystology.

A world with no hunger, no disease, no war, no misery: humanity has conquered all those things, and has even conquered death. Now Scythes are the only ones who can end life—and they are commanded to do so, in order to keep the size of the population under control.

Citra and Rowan are chosen to apprentice to a scythe—a role that neither wants. These teens must master the “art” of taking life, knowing that the consequence of failure could mean losing their own.

My take: So many books to love this month, and this one gets a big dose of love. The idea of this book made me shiver, and the execution (no pun intended) of the idea did as well.

I really admire the way Shusterman takes on social issues that no one wants to touch and makes a compelling story of them. Usually, such stories are fairly heavy-handed, but Shusterman has a light touch that  inspires a great deal of thought. I was a big fan of his Unwind series, and the Arc of a Scythe books promise to deliver as well.

The character development in this book is excellent; the idea is daring and original; and the pacing is right on point.

House of Names: A Novel by Colm Toibin

Synopsis:From the thrilling imagination of bestselling, award-winning Colm Tóibín comes a retelling of the story of Clytemnestra—spectacularly audacious, violent, vengeful, lustful, and instantly compelling—and her children.

“I have been acquainted with the smell of death.” So begins Clytemnestra’s tale of her own life in ancient Mycenae, the legendary Greek city from which her husband King Agamemnon left when he set sail with his army for Troy. Clytemnestra rules Mycenae now, along with her new lover Aegisthus, and together they plot the bloody murder of Agamemnon on the day of his return after nine years at war.

My take: I like novels based on the classics, but told from a different point of view. With a minor in mythology, I read plays and sat through the lectures on the mythos behind this story.

To the Greeks, Clytemnestra was a horror. Women murdering husbands for a wrongdoing was bad for the business of patriarchy--a system to which they were firmly attached. In the Oresteia, Aeschylus's telling of events, Orestes reestablishes order (i.e., male authority) but a resolve to kill one's own mother is hardly endearing. He's a conundrum for the modern reader: Damned if he does, damned if he doesn't, and I'm not sure Toibon changes our mind on that, although he spends a lot of time trying.  I could have done with a whole lot less Orestes and a whole lot more Clytemnestra.

The Last Boleyn: A Novel by Karen Harper

Synopsis: She survived her own innocence, and the treachery of Europe’s royal courts; The Last Boleyn is the story of the rise and fall of the Boleyns, one of England’s most powerful families, through the eyes of the eldest daughter, Mary.

My take: I always tell myself I will not buy another book on the Tudors, and then I remember Wolf Hall and relent. I'm not sure what the decision making process that went into this one was. Probably it went something like this: I'm going to the airport; I need an easy read; this book is on sale. Buy on impulse; regret at leisure.

The writing feels amateurish -- turgid and overblown with inappropriate adjectives, such as 'lumbering castle'. Research is shallow. I noted several inconsistencies from one page to the next in descriptions of the same scene, errors which would have been caught by careful editing. The writing style is  exhausting. Sentences are elongated with too many adverbs and adjectives to keep my attention.

A Rebellion In Heaven: A Novel of Ancient Egypt by John-Philip Penny

Synopsis: Will an immortal god sacrifice eternity to find true love, and the meaning of life?

This lyrical and poetic tale is set in ancient Egypt, when Pharaohs and strange but divine beings ruled over the fates of all.

Enter Anubis -- a young god, powerful, introspective, and heir to the throne of the Afterlife. Within himself he harbours a dark secret, one that throws his immortal soul
into chaos, and drives him to the edge of despair. . .

This poignant new novel from the author of Blood of a Barbarian, and Panzerfaust, is a clever blend of historical fiction, myth, spiritual adventure, and fantasy. It is,
above all, a meditation upon the eternal questions that we all ask ourselves: What is the meaning of life? How can one be happy? And how does one learn to give, and to receive, true love?

My take: Penny gets a few things wrong. For example, you simply cannot see the Pyramids from Thebes (Luxor), and the story of Anubis's birth doesn't jive with the most common myths. However, this book is a nice little read in the vein of American Gods. Anubis, more popular in artwork than in myth, deserves his own quest, and this novel does him proud. If you're an Egyptomaniac, as I clearly am, this is a must read.

His Wicked Wish: A Cinderella Sisterhood Novel (Cinderella Sisterhood Series) by Olivia Drake


The daughter of a disgraced woman and a common actor, Madelyn Swann has been shunned by the nobility. No proper lady would traipse about on a Covent Garden stage, let alone sell herself at auction to the highest bidder. So why in heaven’s name would Nathan Atwood, Viscount Rowley, make a generous offer for her hand?

Turns out Maddy is exactly the type of woman Nathan wants as his wife. Finally, he can embarrass his snobbish and cruel father, the Earl of Gilmore—and scandalize London society—with his beautiful, unsuitable bride. Then he’ll depart England forever and leave his wife behind. Having secret plans of her own, Maddy is happy to play the role … only to find that enjoying her husband’s seduction requires no acting whatsoever. But as she falls madly in love with Nathan, can she persuade him to stay with her for always?

My take: I received this book directly from the hands of the author at a Romance Writers of America 2017 Conference party. It was fun and predictable. I read it in an evening. Sometimes, that's just what I want to do.

Tuesday, September 19, 2017

Ancient Egypt September 18

Ancient Egypt’s Book of the Dead exhibition at Chicago

he Oriental Institute of University of Chicago will host an exhibition about Ancient Egypt’s Book of the Dead from October 3, 2017 to March 31, 2018.

More than 50 objects define and explore the Book of the Dead will be displayed in the exhibition.

“The show features two spectacular Books of the Dead—one 41 feet long—which are shown in their entirety for the first time in nearly a century,” according to the museum’s official website.


Ancient Egypt is one of the most fascinating times in human culture. It is one of mystery, in which we strive to learn more about. It has given us iconic images in the forms of the pyramids and the sphinx, pharaohs, grand palaces, mummies and more. Things both real and imaginary have captured our fascination and imagination of this world for thousands of years. People can recognise names like Cleopatra, Ramses and Tutankhamun, as well as fictional with the likes of the Egyptian gods Anubis, Osiris, Thoth and Ra. It is a time with a distinct look, with gold, hieroglyphs, boats on the Nile, the sun setting over Giza, ancient burial chambers, treasure and more being what we think of when we think of Ancient Egypt.

Paris hosts Egypt’s celebration of Abu Simbel relocation anniversary

Antiquities Minister Khaked al-Anani expressed his full appreciation for the efforts exerted by the Egyptian government in cooperation with UNESCO in the relocation and rescue of the Abu Simbel temples during the last century, which was part of the international campaign to save the monuments of Nubia in 1962.

In ancient Egypt, scribal school was the path to the priesthood and the good life

At this moment, I am teaching a section on ancient Egyptology and droning on about burial practices, pagan gods, pyramids and the development of hieroglyphic writing. But I also point out to them what it would have been like to be students in the old days. And I can assure you it was a lot harder back then in the good old days on the Nile than it is now.

Soulful Creatures: Animal Mummies in Ancient Egypt
Mummified Ibis, 30 B.C.E.–100 C.E. Animal remains, bronze, linen, 29516 x 41316 in. (74.5 × 12.3 cm). Brooklyn Museum, Gift of the Egypt Exploration Fund, 14.655

Soulful Creatures is the first major exhibition to focus on one of the most fascinating aspects of ancient Egyptian culture and religion—the mummification of animals. Drawing on the Brooklyn Museum’s renowned Egyptian collection, this presentation includes 30 mummies on display alongside 69 masterworks of Egyptian art related to the ritual use of animal mummies.

The Met Acquires Ancient Egyptian Gilded Coffin
 Image © The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York

The Metropolitan Museum of Art announced Tuesday that it has acquired an ancient Egyptian gilded cartonnage coffin from the first century B.C. The highly ornamented lid of the coffin is displayed prominently in the Museum's Lila Acheson Wallace Galleries for Egyptian Art (gallery 138), where it will be seen and enjoyed by millions of visitors.

Exhibition at l’Hôtel Cabu, Musée d’Histoire et d’Archéologie, Orléans.

From the Petrie Museum Unofficial Page - Facebook: The Egyptian collections of the museums of Orléans which have been in storage for nearly 70 years will now be on display from the 16th of September to 11th of March 2018 in a new exhibition - Du Nil à la Loire. It will count more than 300 objects among which an exceptional collection of funerary cones (121 of them)!

Several conferences and a Colloquium will also be offered. Read more here: OR here.

Ubisoft drops new trailer for Assassins Creed: Origins introducing the Order of the Ancients

The latest installment in the Assassins Creed's series called Assassin's Creed: Origins was first unveiled at the E3 event this year. While the game, set in ancient Egypt and Roman times, has release scheduled for 27 October, the game's developers Ubisoft have released a trailer which reveal more on the primary antagonist group in the game called as the Order of the Ancients.

Peek inside Egypt's latest tomb discovery

CNN looks at the latest discovery of a tomb found in Luxor, EgyptSource: CNN

Monday, September 11, 2017

Ancient Egypt September 11

Newly unearthed ancient tomb with mummies unveiled in Egypt

Egyptian authorities unveiled a previously undiscovered ancient tomb belonging to a goldsmith and his wife near Luxor in southern Egypt on Saturday.

The tomb, at the Draa Abul Nagaa necropolis, contains "mummies, sarcophagi, statuettes, pots and other artifacts," according to Egypt's Ministry of Antiquities.

Article: Book of the Dead: Becoming God in Ancient Egypt

The ancient Egyptian Book of the Dead needs no introduction. It is one of the most iconic objects from the ancient world. Millions of people have seen examples on display in collections all over the globe. Literary plots have been written around it, and movies have climaxed with dramatic readings of its mysterious spells. It continues to have profound influences throughout music, art, mysticism, and the occult. Without question, it deserves a prominent place among the most important religious compositions in human history.

The Most Famous Ancient Egyptian Site You Have Never Heard Of
Double coffin of Khonsumose, Medelhavsmusee, Uppsala (courtesy Aidan Dodson)

As dusk settles over modern Luxor, and from the very top of the Mortuary Temple of Hatshepsut at Deir el-Bahari, it is possible — as it was in antiquity — to make out the outline of the great temple of Karnak across the Nile.

Look down from that vantage point, on a line towards the modern visitors’ centre, and you will also see a rather unprepossessing low square of wall—unlabeled and ignored by the passing tourists and local people alike.

The face of a mystery ruler revealed: Smashed head from a 4,300-year-old statue shows unknown Egyptian pharaoh

A smashed-up sculpture unearthed at the site of the ancient city Hazor is, ‘beyond any doubt,’ the representation of an Egyptian pharaoh, experts say.
Just who the 4,300-year-old effigy was modeled after, however, remains a mystery.
Discussing the find in a new book, researchers reveal the sculpture has raised a number of questions since it was first discovered in the 1990s, leaving archaeologists perplexed as to how it ended up in Hazor, in northern Israel.

King Tut exhibit moves to state-of-the-art facility

The treasures of the tomb of the ancient Egyptian pharaoh Tutankhamun are being moved to a new home, a state-of-the-art facility, and NBC News was given special access to the painstaking process. NBC’s Keir Simmons reports for TODAY.

There's a great video at the link.

Pictures of the Week

Gold bowl of general Djehuty, given by King Thutmose III
New Kingdom, 18th Dynasty. Reign of Thutmose III, ca. 1479-1425 BC.
Now in the Louvre.

Wooden statue of the God Qebehsenuef, one of the four sons of Horus. 400–30 BC.
Metropolitan Museum.

Monday, September 4, 2017

Ancient Egypt September 4

Labor Day in Ancient Egypt

Labor Day is a holiday in the United States, and one most of us look forward to celebrating. (Who doesn't like a day off work?) This link is to a post I did last for Labor Day 2015; to be perfectly honest, not that much changed in ancient Egyptian labor practices since last year.

The Egyptian Museum of Barcelona

The Egyptian Museum Barcelonaopened in 1994 to display the Egyptian collection of Jordi Clos and introduce the public to 1,100 Egyptian artefacts and various temporary exhibitions. It forms part of the Clos Archaeological Foundation, which also funds archaeological expeditions and training.

The museum is served by the efficient Barcelona metro and easily found between Gaudi’s Sagrada Familia masterpiece and the Passeig De Catalunya, where many other modernist buildings are located. The museum is clean, tidy and well lit and the exhibits are displayed across three floors.

Formwerk3D helps 3D scan rare bust of Ancient Egyptian pharaoh Akhenaten

Up until now, if you wanted to see the rare Ancient Egyptian bust of Akhenaten you would have had to bustle through a crowd at Hannover’s Museum August Kestner and peer past a casing of protective glass. Now, thanks to 3D scanning technologies, you don’t even have to make the trip to Germany to see the stunning artwork.

The Pharaoh’s Magic – Imagery and Diplomacy in the Late Bronze Age

Today we imagine Egyptian magic through the lenses of the Bible and films. But what was the ‘actual’ role of ancient Egyptian magic in the royal palace when the king received foreign delegations?

Imagine you are an upper class Hittite. In your own country you serve your king and live a comfortable life in a spacious estate surrounded by many exotic luxury goods. You have the respect of your peers and command the service of the rest of the population. As a friend of the king of Hatti you are also well-versed in foreign politics, and so you are assigned to visit the king of Egypt and deliver gifts.

A Royal Children’s tomb discovered in the West Bank’s Valley of the Kings in Luxor
By I, Nikater, CC BY-SA 3.0,

According to Dr. Abdel Hakim Karrar, Archaeologist in Egypt, the excavations carried out by the Swiss archaeological delegation of the University of Basel in the Valley of the Kings in Luxor’s West Bank have uncovered several rooms inside tomb KV.40 that were apparently used by the children of the royal family, specifically sons of the Kings Thutmose IV and Amenhotep III (1400-1350 B.C.)