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Piecing together the dispersed tomb of Ptahmose, Mayor of Memphis

Thursday 3 November 2016
Van Steenis
Einsteinweg 2
2333 CC Leiden

New insights from old archives

This lecture will focus on the New Kingdom necropolis at Saqqara, Egypt, c. 1378–1213 BCE. Located on an elevated desert plateau near Ancient Egypt’s long-term administrative capital, Memphis, Saqqara had been the prime burial site for members of the higher echelons of society to construct their funerary monuments. Large-scale excavations in the early- to mid-19th Century CE led to many inscribed and decorated stone elements being removed and subsequently distributed to worldwide public and private collections. As a result, the necropolis nowadays exists largely and virtually outside Saqqara.

Nico Staring's recently completed PhD thesis (Macquarie University, Sydney, Australia) set as its aim to study these tombs and their owners by examining, as a point of departure, the sources pertaining to the early exploration of the site. By combining historical, archaeological, prosopographical, and iconographical data it has been possible highlight various aspects of New Kingdom society. The most significant research results will be presented through the sensational case study of Ptahmose, Mayor of Memphis.

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