Monthly Archives: December 2010

Cache of Demotic Ostraca Found

A Roman cache of demotic ostraca has been discovered at the Greco-Roman site of Soknopaiou Nesos/Dime es-Seba, located two kilometers north of Qarun Lake in the Fayoum.

Minister of Culture, Farouk Hosny, announced today that the cache was uncovered during an excavation carried out by an Italian archaeological expedition from Università del Salento.

Dr. Zahi Hawass, Secretary General of the Supreme Council of Antiquities (SCA), said that 150 ostraca were found. Each ostracon was inscribed with the name of a priest who worked at Soknopaiou Nesos in a temple dedicated to the god, Soknopaios. The texts written on the ostraca date back to the Roman period and have been very helpful in illuminating the religious practices and the prosopography of Greco-Roman Egypt.

Dr. Mario Capasso, Director of the mission, suggests that the newly discovered ostraca were originally kept in a storeroom situated in a courtyard in front of Soknopaios’ temple. Dr. Capasso believes that the ostraca were thrown out of the temple during a clandestine excavation at the end of the 19th century.

Soknopaiou Nesos is very important for the understanding of Greco-Roman society in Egypt because of its excellent state of preservation and the amount of papyri and other inscribed material found at the site. Civilization at the site reached its peak during the first and second century AD as it sat along a major trade route. In addition to the Ptolemaic temple of Soknopaios, the site is well known for a collection of sphinxes, as well as Roman and demotic papyri.

Memphis Tours Egypt Since 1955
Reference : drhawass.com
Posted By : Shaimaa Ahmed

Categories: Ancient Egypt, Archaeology, Discoveries in Egypt, Egypt Latest news, Egypt Travel, Latest new in Egypt, Luxury Holidays (VIP), Museums, Recent descoveries in Egypt, Sightseeing Tours, Special Offers in Egypt | Tags: , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Where did the pyramids go??

Giza Plateau

Giza Plateau

I had such an amazing experience this morning at the pyramids that I had to share it with all of you. Every winter Cairo gets a few days of thick fog, but it always burns off by 9 or 10 in the morning. This morning however the fog was so thick that you couldn’t see any of the pyramids at Giza! I have been working at the pyramids for over 30 years and I have never seen a day like this. I hope you all enjoy this interesting perspective of the Sphinx without Khafre’s pyramid! (Photo: Meghan E. Strong)

Note : That day is one of the rare days in Egypt to happen. It actually happens during the beginning of the winter and the end if the summer. The weather in Egypt is perfect most of the year.

Memphis Tours Egypt Since 1955
Reference: drhawass.com
Posted By: Shaimaa Ahmed

Categories: Adventure Tours, Ancient Egypt, Archaeology, Budget Tours, Cairo history, Cairo Info, Cairo Tour, Classical Tours, Cultural Tourism, Discoveries in Egypt, Latest Discoveries in Egypt, Latest new in Egypt, Nile Cruise, Safari Travel, Shore Excursions, Sightseeing Tours, Special Offers in Egypt | Tags: , , , , | Leave a comment

New Egyptian lecture announced!

Dr. Zahi Hawass, Secretary General of the Egyptian Supreme Council of Antiquities, Vice-Culture Minister for Egypt and one of the most important Egyptologists in the world today, will be holding his first public lecture in Manchester at Bridgewater Hall on Friday, 4 February 2011.

Dr.Zahi Hawass New Book

Dr.Zahi Hawass New Book

This lecture sees Hawass return to the UK after his sell-out speech in front of 2,300 visitors at the IndigO Theatre in London’s O2 Arena, back in August 2008.Highly regarded among experts for his commitment to drawing worldwide attention to Egypt’s history and treasures, Hawass has made a decisive contribution to the lasting public legacy of Ancient Egypt and the far-reaching cultural significance of this era.

Dr. Zahi Hawass will discuss Egypt’s most famous pharaoh, Tutankhamun, the search for the tomb of Queen Nefertiti, new insights on the tombs in the Valley of the Kings and the exciting research into the tombs of Cleopatra and Mark Anthony in his 90 minute multimedia lecture. He will also draw on biographical anecdotes and personal experiences from his many years of scientific activity, including his current excavations at Giza and latest project – revealing the secrets of the mummy of Ramses III.

 

Following his lecture, visitors will be treated to a book signing and be able to get signed copies of Hawass’ books, ‘Inside the Egyptian Museum,’ ‘A Secret Voyage’ and his long-awaited new children’s book ‘King Tut and I.’

The lecture is being hosted in conjunction with Semmel Concerts and The Manchester Ancient Egypt Society.

Tickets are available from 16 December, 2010.

Memphis Tours Egypt Since 1955
Reference:drhawass.com

Posted By:Shaimaa Ahmed

 

Categories: Cultural Tourism, Egypt onboard, Events In Egypt, International affairs | Tags: , , , , , , | Leave a comment

The National Museum of Egyptian Civilization to open next September

New museum in Cairo will house artifacts from across Egypt to paint a picture of time’s sweep
Culture Minister Farouk Hosny on Monday inspected the National Museum of Egyptian Civilization (NMEC) to check on the final stage of its construction.

During the tour Hosny said that the work was on schedule and told reporters that a committee will be appointed to follow up on the progress.

Developed with technical support from UNESCO, the building, located in EL-Fustat, was designed by the Egyptian architect Dr El Ghazzali Kosseiba and the Japanese interior designer Arata Isozaki.

Hosny described the museum as an exploration of Egypt’s history through an exploration of its people as well as the monuments they built. On display will be 150,000 artifacts selected from museums around Egypt including Cairo’s Egyptian, Islamic and Coptic museums; the Greco-Roman and Alexandria National museums in Alexandria; and the Luxor Museum. Archaeological artifacts kept in storage in sites such as the Giza Plateau and Saqqara will also be put on display. The transfer of these objects will start next week where they will be stored in the NMEC’s vaults until its opening.

The museum will also display the feats and achievements that Egypt history has witnessed over the span of its time. In addition to the chosen collection, the NMEC will house a whole set of monuments, among them the Seboua Temple of Ramses II, now on Lake Nasser; a complete façade of a Fatimid sabil; two columns from King Djoser’s temple at Saqqara; the collection of royal mummies; and the mummy of the ancient Egyptian artist Sanejem which is now on display at the Egyptian Museum in Tahrir Square.

The museum’s official inauguration is scheduled for September 2011.

Memphis Tours Egypt Since 1955
Reference : ahram.org
Posted by : Shaimaa Ahmed

Categories: Adventure Tours, Ancient Egypt, Archaeology, Cairo history, Cairo Info, Cairo Tour, Cultural Tourism, Egypt Latest news, Events In Egypt, Museums, Sightseeing Tours | Tags: , , , , | Leave a comment

Peru succeeds in getting 4,000 objects back home!

Between 1911 and 1915, Hiram Bingham III conducted excavations at Machu Picchu in Peru in conjunction with Yale University. Over the course of Bingham’s work, he uncovered more than 4,000 objects, which he requested to take back to Yale for study and temporary exhibition. In the original contract Bingham agreed to give back the objects after 18 months. However, the agreement was never honored and the artifacts have remained in the Peabody Museum at Yale ever since.

The site of Machu Picchu in Peru from which the 4,000 objects were excavated by Hiram Bingham. The site will celebrate its centennial of discovery in 2011. (Photo: Peruvian Government)

The site of Machu Picchu in Peru from which the 4,000 objects were excavated by Hiram Bingham. The site will celebrate its centennial of discovery in 2011. (Photo: Peruvian Government)

Both Peru and Yale University have been in negotiations over the past few years to return the objects back to their rightful home in Peru. Due to Yale’s resistance however, Peru filed a lawsuit against Yale citing their violation of Peruvian law by removing the objects without special permission from the Peruvian government and their refusal to give the objects back. Unfortunately, after the lawsuit and the ensuing legal red tape, no agreement had been reached between the two parties as of 2010.

In April 2010, the Supreme Council of Antiquities (SCA) sponsored a conference on the International Cooperation for the Protection and Repatriation of Cultural Heritage. The main goal of the conference was to bring together nations who had been negatively affected by illegal trafficking of antiquities so that they could work together to find a solution to this problem. A total of twenty-two countries attended the conference, including a delegation from Peru. I was very impressed with Peru’s commitment to the repatriation of stolen artifacts and by their impassioned participation in the conference. All the delegations were asked to submit “wish lists” at the conference so that there would be a public record of all the pieces those countries wanted returned to their rightful homes. Included on Peru’s wish list were the 4,000 objects at Yale.

After the conference I stayed in close contact with the Peruvian delegation and in October 2010, the Minister of Foreign Affairs from Peru, José Antonio Garciá Belaúnde, and the Ambassador of Peru in Egypt came to meet me in order to seek my advice on what Peru should do in order to bring their precious objects home. I advised the Minister of Foreign Affairs to bring this matter to the media’s attention. One of the key components in my campaign to return stolen artifacts to Egypt is the media. I have been insistent on bringing this unacceptable behavior to light through press releases, print media and television appearances.

Taking this under consideration, Peru began an aggressive media campaign in November 2010 in order to pressure Yale into returning the Peruvian artifacts. Thankfully their efforts were successful and Peru and Yale University reached an agreement on November 23 for all of the 4,000 objects to be returned over the next two years. Most importantly the best quality pieces among the collection will be back in Peru for the centennial celebration of the discovery of Machu Picchu. I am extremely pleased at the outcome of this case and I hope that Peru’s battle will become one of many success stories in the return of stolen antiquities. I am very glad that I could be of assistance in their negotiations with Yale and I look forward to seeing more artifacts returned to their rightful home.

Memphis Tours Egypt Since 1955
Reference: drhawass.com
Posted by: Shaimaa Ahmed

Categories: International affairs, Peru back it's antiquities | Tags: , , | Leave a comment

Statuary fragments uncovered in Luxor

Minister of Culture, Farouk Hosny announced that these objects were found during a routine excavation carried out by an Egyptian team on the northern side of the temple. The team has been working to uncover the ruins of the funerary complex, which was once the largest temple in ancient Egypt.

Two red granite statuary fragments found at the site of Amenhotep III's mortuary temple on the west bank of Luxor (Photo: SCA)

Two red granite statuary fragments found at the site of Amenhotep III's mortuary temple on the west bank of Luxor (Photo: SCA)

Unfortunately, during the Late Period, the temple was destroyed and its blocks were reused in the construction of other temples.

 

Dr. Zahi Hawass, Secretary General of the Supreme Council of Antiquities (SCA), explained that the first newly discovered artifact is a 2.73m tall head of the god Hapi. Hapi was one of the four sons of Horus and is depicted with a baboon face. The second object is a fragment of a larger statue of King Amehotep III, which features two legs that measure 30cm tall. Excavation is now focused on unearthing the rest of these statuary fragments.

 

Due to the large number of statuary found in this area, Hawass believes that the northern side of the temple may have served as a burial spot for broken and damaged statues. Because the statuary were ritually significant they could not be destroyed, instead Hawass believes that the ancient Egyptians gathered the fallen statues and buried them in a cache beside the temple.

 

Abdel Ghaffar Wagdi, supervisor of the excavation team, said that excavators are working now on uncovering more statues from the agricultural land surrounding Amenhotep III’s mortuary temple. In the past two archaeological seasons five double statues of King Amenhotep III accompanied by the deities: Re-Horakhti, Khepri, Horus, and Hapi have been found.

Memphis Tours Egypt
Reference: drhawass.com
Posted by: Shaimaa Ahmed

Categories: Ancient Egypt, Archaeology, Cairo history, Cairo Info, Cultural Tourism, Discoveries in Egypt, Egypt Latest news, Latest Discoveries in Egypt, Recent descoveries in Egypt, Shore Excursions, Sightseeing Tours | Tags: , , , , , , | 1 Comment

New Phase of Egyptian Museum Development Project Inaugurated

Today, Dr. Zahi Hawass, Secretary General of the Supreme Council of Antiquities (SCA), inaugurated the new Development Project of the Egyptian Museum in Tahrir Square.

View of the newly opened Egyptian Museum Store (Photo: Meghan E. Strong)

Minister of Culture, Farouk Hosny announced that the project’s aim is to provide more services and facilities to the museum’s patrons, which will include adding a new visitor’s route and extending the hours of operation until 10:00 pm.

The museum is now equipped with a brand new visitor’s center that includes a beautiful bookstore, cafeteria, restaurant and a children’s museum. This center is located on the western side of the Egyptian Museum and will be accessible through the museum’s new tour route.

Dr. Hawass also will announce the opening of an open-air permanent exhibition on the eastern side of the museum. The collection includes a number of sarcophagi, statuary and architectural elements from ancient Egyptian tombs and temples.

Dr. Hawass inaugurated the new phase of the Egyptian Museum Development Project, which includes a bookstore, cafeteria, restaurant and open air exhibition (Photo: Meghan E. Strong)

Dr. Hawass inaugurated the new phase of the Egyptian Museum Development Project, which includes a bookstore, cafeteria, restaurant and open air exhibition (Photo: Meghan E. Strong)

At the completion of this Development Project, visitors will enter the museum from the main entrance gate located at Tahrir Square and exit from the side gate next to Mariette’s mausoleum.

This phase of the Egyptian Museum Development Project is one part of a multi-phase plan to transform the museum into a beautiful space for the display of ancient Egyptian art. The project will be complete after transferring some of the existing Egyptian Museum collection to the planned Grand Egyptian Museum overlooking Giza plateau.

The Egyptian Museum

The Egyptian Museum

The basement of the museum has also gotten a face-lift as part of the project. Hawass explains that it has been transformed into a research center for scientific testing, equipped with a DNA lab, documentation center and administrative sector.

Memphis Tours Egypt Since 1955
Posted by: Shaimaa Ahmed
References : drhawass.com

Categories: Ancient Egypt, Archaeology, Cairo Info, Cairo Tour, Egypt Latest news, Events In Egypt, Internternational Museums, Museums | Tags: , , , , | Leave a comment

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