Friday, 23 November 2012

90th Anniversary of the Opening of the Tomb of Tutankhamen


When Carter and his team found the steps on 4th of November they had no idea what they lead to and when they cleared the steps and the corridor they still had no idea if the tomb was going to be empty. That had happened before. Carter had wired his sponsor once he found the steps and said he had covered up the tomb awaiting his arrival so whatever lay behind that wall would be a surprise for both of them. On 22nd November 1922 Howard Carter pushed a light through a breech in the wall that blocked the entrance to the tomb of Tutankhamen and when asked what he saw by his sponsor Lord Carnarvon he said ‘wonderful things’. So the celebration yesterday was to commemorate that event.

We started in the Valley of Kings and all the various missions were gathered, it was great chatting with them. I was invited by the Hungarian mission to visit their dig. Much to our combined surprise photos were allowed and I had my I-phone with me so I took a few photos of the crowd. We had to wait for the guests of honour, The Minister of Tourism, Minister of Antiquities, the American Ambassador and the current Lord and Lady Carnarvon. 
Teresa Bedman, Me, Mohammed Bali, Francisco Martine Valentine

Christian Le Blanc

Hungarian Team
Lady Carnarvon

Francesco Tiradritti

Then we went into the tomb of Merenptah which had been closed for some years whilst restoration of the sarcophagi had taken place. You may remember a lecture a while ago given by Ted Brock when he talked about the work he had done inside the tomb. I really like the marking in the concrete, that holds together the restored piece of the originals, so you get a sense of what the entire piece was like. They have also placed the objects on plinths with lights so you can view the underside, nice. With the media there with all their heavy duty professional cameras the rules about no photos was also relaxed inside the tomb. No flash of course but with cameras today that is not a big issue. I was snapping away like made. I have put the entire album up on Facebook good and bad photos http://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.10151287509611072.516206.528791071&type=1&l=5ccaafb27e but just selected a few here.






Then the group moved to the tomb of Tutankhamen. I haven’t been inside since 1981 and as they may well close the tomb soon I thought I ought to as I went down they were interviewing Lord and Lady Carnarvon and I took the opportunity to say hello to her as we knew each other from when we worked together on the Carter House restoration. Imagine my pleasure when she gave me a present, she expected I would be there and had brought me some Highclere souvenirs. I was over the moon and just wished my grandmother was still alive to know about it. Imagine being given a present by Lady Carnarvon in the tomb of Tutankhamen that she had brought especially for you. I think it was fair to say it was the most special day of my Egyptology life.

I went into the tomb and can you believe it we were allowed to take photos there as well, stunning so I snapped away. There were some people working in the tomb and their lights appear in the pictures but I am sure you don’t mind.


Lord and Lady Carnarvon in the tomb of Tutankhamen

Tutankhamen





In the evening was a do at the Carter House, the first part was a slide show and speeches by the various dignitaries. Both the American Ambassador Anne Patterson and Lord and Lady Carnarvon spoke about tourism. Expressing their hope that their high profile visits showed the world that Egypt was safe for tourists and people should come and enjoy the wonders of Luxor. Then there was a 6 course gala dinner which was finished off with a cake in the shape of Tutankhamen, Lady Carnarvon cut the first slice.









Wednesday, 21 November 2012

Monthu Temple reveals new pharaonic secrets -Heritage - Ahram Online

New discovery at Luxor. 

Monthu Temple reveals new pharaonic secrets - Ancient Egypt - Heritage - Ahram Online: A French archaeological mission from the French Institute for Archaeological Studies have unearthed a yet unidentified royal statue of a New Kingdom king during routine excavations at Monthu Temple, northeast of Karnak Temple in Luxor.

The statue is 125 centimetres tall and made of black granite and depicts a standing king wearing short dress with hands aside.

Christopher Tiers, head of the archaeological mission, said that early studies of the statue suggest that the artistic features of the depicted king confirm its royalty.

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Tutankhamen's 90 birthday celebrations

Tomorrow is the anniversary of the entry into the tomb of Tutankhamen (4th November was the discovery of the steps) and there is going to be an event in the valley of kings tomorrow starting at 10:00. The tomb of Merenptah is going to be opened at 10:30 then a visit to Tutankhamen finishing off with a viewing of photos in the visitors centre. My Mansour was telling me that the reopened tomb of Merenptah is the 2nd biggest in the valley and the the restored sarcophagus and lid will be on display.

Daughters of Isis: Women in Ancient Egypt (Egyptology Online @ Manchester – The University of Manchester)


If you can get to Manchester then there is a great study day, full details on the website.   


Daughters of Isis: Women in Ancient Egypt (Egyptology Online @ Manchester – The University of Manchester): A series of presentations examining the lives, roles, health and deaths of ancient Egyptian women. Presented by Egyptology Online in association with the KNH Centre for Biomedical Egyptology.


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Sunday, 18 November 2012

South Asasif Conservation Project Study Tour to Upper Egypt

If you liked the conference in October you will love this and I know at least one person who is extending her stay in Luxor and my flats are available to all.

Hidden Treasures – Inspiration, Renaissance and Innovation in the Late Period
This tour accompanied throughout by Dr Elena Pischikova will explore key Theban inspiration for the Late
Period in New Kingdom Thebes, and trace the emergence of the Kushites in the twenty-fifth dynasty and
their reuse and extension of past models that underlies the so-called Saite renaissance of the Late Period.
Detailed Itinerary –Easter 2013
MONDAY 25th March to MONDAY 1st April 2013
Day 1 : Direct Flight London -> Luxor (Egyptair) and transfer to the 5* Sonesta St George Hotel
(Side Nile View Rooms) for 4 nights on a Bed and Breakfast basis.
Day 2 : Today we start our exploration of New Kingdom inspirations re-experiencing the familiar
sites of the Valley of the Kings (with Special Permission to enter Seti I). In the afternoon we
have an outside view of the South Asasif necropolis before visiting the chapels of the Divine
Adorotresses of Thebes situated at Medinet Habu, the site of the Mortuary temple of Ramesses III
and the 18th Dynasty chapels of Amun. Evening Lecture
Day 3 : In the morning we visit the temple of Karnak which provides a palimpsest of building from
the Middle Kingdom to the Late Period, we focus on inspirations and Late Period building such as
the rarely visited chapels of Osiris Wennefer Neb Djefau and Osiris Heka-Djet, the Ptah Temple,
the Treasury of Shabaka and the Taharqa Edifice. In the afternoon we examine the Late Period
collection in the Luxor Museum and visit Luxor temple highlighting the Third Intermediate Period
and Late Period developments at the site.
Day 4 : We have a full and extraordinary day at Deir el-Bahri and at the North Asasif. In addition
to the Mortuary Temple of Hatshepsut we enjoy an unusual visit to the outside of the tomb of
Nespakashuty D (TT312) excavated by Dr. Pischikova and a very privileged visit to the tomb of
Senenmut (Special Permission to enter). Later we visit the tombs of Ankh-Hor (TT414),
Pabesa (TT279), Montuemhat (TT34 - from outside), Ibi (TT36 -Special Permission to enter)
and Basa (TT389 – from the outside). Evening Lecture.
Day 5 : Drive from Luxor to Aswan visiting the temple of Edfu and the site of el-Kab en-route.
Transfer to the 5* Movenpick, Aswan for 3 nights on a Bed and Breakfast basis.
Day 6 : Morning visit to Philae followed by an afternoon excursion to Kom Ombo
Day 7 : We start the day by exploring the fascinating multi-period site of Elephantine before our
final visit of the tour to the island of New Kalabsha which houses relocated temples from the
Ramesside and Roman periods.
Day 8 : Morning visit to the Nubian Museum before our Scheduled Flights with Egyptair from
Aswan to London via Cairo
Costs:
 Core itinerary price per person on twin share basis - £1695 (including scheduled flights)
 Single Supplement - £130
 Price without flights - deduct £475.
The price includes the following:
 Scheduled Economy Class air travel using Egyptair. Flights are subject to change but the
provisional schedule is:
o 25MAR13 MS762 LHR-LXR dep :1435 arr : 2215
o 25MAR13 MS396 ASW-CAI dep : 1340 arr : 1505
o 01APR13 MS779 CAI-LHR dep : 1710 arr : 2115
 Private airport transfers in Egypt and tour transportation in an air-conditioned vehicle
 Private representative services in all airports
 Accommodation and breakfast as described in the detailed itinerary.
 All entrance fees and special permissions for sites in the detailed itinerary
 Services of Dr Elena Pischikova, John Billman and local licensed guide(s)
 Tips for drivers and porterage
 Donation to the South Asasif Conservation Trust
The Price DOES NOT include:
 Visa for Egypt
 Excess baggage charges.
 Tips for local guide(s)
 All items of a personal nature such as laundry, medical expenses, room service, and
beverages.
 Meals not detailed in the itinerary
 Travel insurance
 Airport transfer in the UK
Tailored extensions and flight upgrades may be available.

Please email  trishamason@sky.com if you want more details

Wednesday, 14 November 2012

(1) Missione Archeologica Italiana a Luxor

(1) Missione Archeologica Italiana a Luxor: Welcome to the newly created FB page dedicated to the activities of the MAIL in the Funerary Complex of Harwa (TT 37) and Akhimenru (TT 404)

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Tutankhamun's replica tomb unveiled - Ancient Egypt - Heritage - Ahram Online

Tutankhamun's replica tomb unveiled - Ancient Egypt - Heritage - Ahram Online: In 2010 the SCA said they had selected the Carter's Rest House at the entrance of the Valley of the Kings for the permanent installation of the three replica tombs, however, the current Minister of State for Antiquities Mohamed Ibrahim clarifies that, actually, the Permanent Committee of Ancient Egyptian Monuments will select a location and that he doesn't foresee it will be at the Valley of the Kings entrance.

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I wonder where they will put it in that case?

Monday, 12 November 2012

Ray Johnson Talks About Khonsu Temple.m4v - YouTube

Ray Johnson Talks About Khonsu Temple.m4v - YouTube: Ray Johnson, director of the Epigraphic Survey at Chicago House, talks about discoveries at Khonsu Temple that alter our understanding of its history. Khonsu Temple, located in the Karnak Temple complex, has always been known to be composed entirely of reused blocks. Now as part of ARCE's project there, an exciting new chapter is being added....



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Friday, 9 November 2012

Update from Osirisnet Nakhtamon ; TT 341 Thebes; Luxor now online


From the wonderful Thierry Benderitter at Osirisnet. 
We are presenting to you today, with a complete photographic coverage, the tomb of Nakhtamon, TT341.He was "Overseer of the altar" in the temple of millions of years of Ramesses II. Therefore he appears to have been in charge of the organisation of the procession of the priests of the daily divine ritual in the Ramesseum and of the distribution of the offerings on the altars.Other interesting representations are to be found in this tomb :
Ramesses II with a natural beard (reserved for the periods of mourning) and wearing the blue crown; a  representation, unique in all Theban tombs, of an male image equipped with wings, surrounded with small blue lines which he seems to radiate; priests with extraordinarily elongated skulls.

Nakhtamon ; TT 341 ; TT341 ; Thebes; Luxor ; west bank ; Egypt tomb (1): - Sent using Google Toolbar

Tuesday, 6 November 2012

Luxor, Egypt reels in shock horror - thunder and rain!!!!!

Hello from rainy Luxor! I know I can't believe it either, last night at about 3am we had this terrific thunderstorm.



Then today we have proper rain.



Once this finishes you might find artefacts washed up, often locals will be searching the hills the moment a storm finishes. 

Tutankhamun's tomb in Luxor will be closed to tourists in future | Mail Online

Big story about the replica. 

Tutankhamun's tomb in Luxor will be closed to tourists in future | Mail Online: The Egyptian Tourism Federation said that preservation was behind the move. Chairman El Hamy el-Zayat explained: 'We want to keep the tomb for the next generation and the generation after,' said of the Egyptian Tourism Federation. 'It’s been here for over 3000 years and we want to make sure it stays with us.'

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John Nicholson: Is Egypt Safe for Tourism? Yes. says Huffington Post

John Nicholson: Is Egypt Safe for Tourism? Yes.: Our media back home continue to perpetuate the myth that Egypt is unsafe for foreign tourists, and they love to play old clips of rallies and demonstrations in one tiny square in one city of Egypt from specific days every time a story on Egypt is reported. The funny thing to those of us actually on the ground in Egypt every month is that we see these same news reports and stories on TV from our hotel rooms, then we look out the window and see life on the streets of Cairo going on as normal - calmly and peacefully. Then we look back at the TV screen and see clips being played from months or even years ago now and we can't help but laugh.

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Sunday, 4 November 2012

Statement concerning media reports about UK Government travel advice to Egypt

I guess my complaints were worthwhile. "Our overall advice for travel to Egypt has not changed this weekend

 Our overall advice for travel to Egypt has not changed this weekend. With the exception of those areas set out in the travel advice (available at http://www.fco.gov.uk/en/travel-and-living-abroad/travel-advice-by-country/middle-east-north-africa/egypt), we do not advise against travel to Egypt. Changes made over the weekend concerned the threat of terrorism. However, these changes have not affected our overall advice on where to travel in Egypt.

Statement concerning media reports about UK Government travel advice to Egypt: - Sent using Google Toolbar

Embassy response to media hysteria on safety in Egypt

The BBC are running...: UK in Egypt Our overall advice for travel to Egypt has not changed this weekend. With the exception of those areas set out in the travel advice (available at http://www.fco.gov.uk/en/travel-and-living-abroad/travel-advice-by-country/middle-east-north-africa/egypt), we do not advise against travel to Egypt. Changes made over the weekend concerned the threat of terrorism. However, these changes have not affected our overall advice on where to travel in Egypt.

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FACTUM ARTE - News The Tomb of Tutankhamun - replica work now complete

FACTUM ARTE - News: The Tomb of Tutankhamun - work now complete
On the 4th November it is the 90th anniversary of the discovery of the first signs that would lead Howard Carter to discover the Tomb of Tutankhamun. To cebebrate this event we are sending the facsimile of the Burial Chamber to Cairo to be included in an EU task force that takes place on 13th and 14th November. The Facsimile will be given to the Arab Republic of Egypt and, in line with the announcements made by the SCA in 2010, the aim is to install it in a site that has been designated near Carter's house at the entrance to the Valley of the Kings. The transport of the facsimile to Egypt is being paid for by the Ministry of Tourism of Egypt.

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90th anniversary of the discovery of Tutankhamen

90 years ago today Carter's workmen found the first step that would lead to the tomb of Tutankhamen. 

This article is a very biased account but ought to be discussed as some of the facts are true. 
Downton Abbey and the Great Grave Robbery: | Mail Online: - Sent using Google Toolbar

Saturday, 3 November 2012

Egypt travel advice Update - How safe is Egypt?

The UK papers have publicised a change to the travel advice and I am being asked

  • Is Egypt safe
  • Should I cancel my Luxor holiday
  • How safe is it in Egypt
 Well as you can see from this map 90% of the country is as safe as any where in the world. The only area you should worry about is the Sinai and if you check the detailed advice the resorts are considered ok. So no don't cancel your very well deserved holiday.

Egypt travel advice: - Sent using Google Toolbar

5/11/2012 00:15 Update from the embassy

http://ukinegypt.fco.gov.uk/en/news/?view=News&id=830887382#.UJbIibeLPi4.facebook

Statement concerning media reports about UK Government travel advice to Egypt

04 November 2012
Our overall advice for travel to Egypt has not changed this weekend
Our overall advice for travel to Egypt has not changed this weekend. With the exception of those areas set out in the travel advice (available at http://www.fco.gov.uk/en/travel-and-living-abroad/travel-advice-by-country/middle-east-north-africa/egypt), we do not advise against travel to Egypt. Changes made over the weekend concerned the threat of terrorism. However, these changes have not affected our overall advice on where to travel in Egypt.