Sunday, March 29, 2015

Ancient Egyptian brewery found in downtown Tel Aviv

Potsherds used for producing beer discovered at site believed to be northernmost Egyptian settlement in Early Bronze Age, 5,000 years ago

By Ilan Ben Zion

Nothing beats a cold one on a hot Tel Aviv summer evening, a sentiment it seems was shared by the ancient Egyptians.

Archaeological excavations at a construction site in the White City found remains of a 5,000-year-old brewery belonging to a Bronze Age Egyptian settlement, Israel’s Antiquities Authority announced Sunday.

The site, located in the heart of Tel Aviv, is the northernmost Egyptian site from the Early Bronze Age.

It was excavated by IAA archaeologists as part of a salvage dig before the construction of a new tower on Hamasger Street.

The excavation also yielded 6,000-year-old artifacts, including a bronze dagger and flint tools.

“We found seventeen pits in the excavations, which were used to store agricultural produce in the Early Bronze Age I (3500-3000-BCE),” dig director Diego Barkan said in a statement.

“Among the hundreds of pottery sherds that characterize the local culture, a number of fragments of large ceramic basins were discovered that were made in an Egyptian tradition and were used to prepare beer.”

Beer was a staple of the ancient Egyptian diet, a convenient means of converting grains into storable calories, and the alcohol content, while low, made contaminated water potable. “The Egyptians drank beer morning, noon and night,” said Barkan.

Workers building the Pyramids at Giza were given a daily ration of several liters of beer each day in addition to bread.

The ancients praised its value, as one inscription from the third millennium BCE stated: “The mouth of a perfectly contented man is filled with beer.”

The beer vessels, Barkan said, were made in a fashion not usual in the local ceramic industry, and of a type similar to those found at an Egyptian administrative building at ‘En Besor, in the northwestern Negev Desert. He said that the excavation was the first evidence of Egyptian presence from the Early Bronze Age in what’s today Tel Aviv.

“Until now we were only aware of an Egyptian presence in the northern Negev and southern coastal plain, whereby the northernmost point of Egyptian occupation occurred in Azor,” Barkan said.

“Now we know that they also appreciated what the Tel Aviv region had to offer and that they too knew how to enjoy a glass of beer, just as Tel Avivians do today.”

Source: http://www.timesofisrael.com/ancient-egyptian-brewery-found-in-downtown-tel-aviv/

Saturday, March 28, 2015

Ancient Egyptian skeleton shows signs of breast cancer

By Elahe Izadi

Researchers working in Egypt say they have found the oldest example of breast cancer in the 4,200-year-old remains of an Egyptian woman — a discovery that casts further doubt on the common perception of cancer as a modern disease associated with today's lifestyles.

This evidence, reported by the news agency Reuters, comes a year after another team announced its own discovery farther south in the Nile Valley. Those archaeologists had examined a 3,000-year-old skeleton that a Durham University researcher found in modern-day Sudan and said it was the oldest complete example of a human suffering from metastatic cancer.

They published their findings last year in the journal PLoS ONE, writing that cancer's relative absence in the archaeological record had given "rise to the conclusion that the disease is mainly a product of modern living and increased longevity."

The newest ancient example of cancer, discovered by an anthropological team from Spain's University of Jaen, was found in the bones of a woman thought to have been an aristocrat from southern Egypt, Reuters reported.

"The study of her remains shows the typical destructive damage provoked by the extension of a breast cancer as a metastasis," Egyptian Antiquities Minister Mamdouh el-Damaty said in a statement on Tuesday, Reuters reported. He added that the woman's bones showed "an extraordinary deterioration."

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Wednesday Weekly # 71

Welcome to the Wednesday Weekly, your weekly dose of links to Egyptology news, articles, blogs, events and more!

Brooklyn Museum

THE ANCIENT WORLD ONLINE

Open Access Archives: Griffith Institute
http://ancientworldonline.blogspot.nl/2009/10/open-access-archives-griffith-institute.html

CIPEG: International Committee for Egyptology in the International Council of Museums
http://ancientworldonline.blogspot.nl/2015/03/cipeg-international-committee-for.html

MARÍA ROSA VALDESOGO

Young Girls with Common Mourners in Ancient Egypt.
http://www.mariarosavaldesogo.com/young-girls-with-common-mourners-in-ancient-egypt/

IN THE ARTIFACT LAB

Wilfred/a’s many mysteries
http://www.penn.museum/sites/artifactlab/2015/03/23/wilfredas-many-mysteries/

EGYPT CENTRE, SWANSEA

Sekhmet and the Theosophical Society
http://egyptcentre.blogspot.nl/2015/03/sekhmet-and-theosophical-society.html

Shsh....secrets (Harpocrates and initiation rituals!)
http://egyptcentre.blogspot.nl/2015/03/shshsecrets-harpocrates-and-initiation.html

An unusual souvenir?
http://egyptcentre.blogspot.nl/2015/03/an-unusual-souvenir.html

EGYPT AT THE MANCHESTER MUSEUM

Botany in Ancient Egypt – Part 1
https://egyptmanchester.wordpress.com/2015/03/18/botany-in-ancient-egypt-part-1/

Botany in Ancient Egypt – Part 2
https://egyptmanchester.wordpress.com/2015/03/20/botany-in-ancient-egypt-part-2/

AHRAM ONLINE

Two sections of Sphinxes Avenue in Luxor to open
http://english.ahram.org.eg/NewsContent/9/40/125793/Heritage/Ancient-Egypt/Two-sections-of-Sphinxes-Avenue-in-Luxor-to-open.aspx

AERA

What is behind the bones…
http://www.aeraweb.org/blog/what-is-behind-the-bones/

AL-AHRAM WEEKLY

Luxor tombs found
http://weekly.ahram.org.eg/News/10755/47/Luxor-tombs-found.aspx

ANCIENT EGYPTIAN DEMONOLOGY PROJECT

Akhu ‘Spirits’ in the Coffin Texts
http://www.demonthings.com/akhu-spirits-in-the-coffin-texts/

Demon Database presentation at Berkeley
http://www.demonthings.com/demon-database-berkeley/

EES DELTA SURVEY

Ovens and beads
http://deltasurvey.tumblr.com/post/114043425828/ovens-and-beads

Pots, pumice and puppies!
http://deltasurvey.tumblr.com/post/114216228963/pots-pumice-and-puppies

Last day on site
http://deltasurvey.tumblr.com/post/114395240773/last-day-on-site

BEYOND BONES

All Tied Up – A New Addition to the Hall of Ancient Egypt at HMNS
http://blog.hmns.org/2015/03/all-tied-up-a-new-addition-to-the-hall-of-ancient-egypt-at-hmns/

BROOKLYN MUSEUM

The secret life of books
http://brooklynmuseum.tumblr.com/post/114043358740/the-secret-life-of-books-in-the-wle-may-surprise

Happy #Caturday from the Brooklyn Museum
http://brooklynmuseum.tumblr.com/post/114230231575/happy-caturday-from-the-brooklyn-museum-this-is

HARMAKIS

Sections first and fifth Avenue of Sphinxes in Luxor are to open Sunday after restoration
http://harmakis.net/en/archives/3578

April 1: countdown to the New Egyptian Museum of Turin
http://harmakis.net/en/archives/3581

DR ZAHI HAWASS

Evidence Of The Oldest Breast Cancer In The World Found In Egypt
http://www.drhawass.com/wp/evidence-of-the-oldest-breast-cancer-in-the-world-found-in-egypt/

NILE MAGAZINE

The Anonymous Sphinx
http://www.nilemagazine.com.au/latest-stories/2015/3/19/the-anonymous-sphinx

A Face from Egypt's Most Distant Past
http://www.nilemagazine.com.au/latest-stories/2015/3/20/a-face-from-egypts-most-distant-past

Ancient Egypt's Best-dressed Cats
http://www.nilemagazine.com.au/latest-stories/2015/3/22/ancient-egypts-best-dressed-cats

More of Luxor's Sphinx Avenue is Now Open
http://www.nilemagazine.com.au/latest-stories/2015/3/24/more-of-luxors-sphinx-avenue-is-now-open

EES MINUFIYEH SURVEY

Quesna: the Season Beginnings 16th-24th March 2015
http://minufiyeh.tumblr.com/post/114501426496/quesna-the-season-beginnings-16th-24th-march-2015

THE CAIRO POST

Egypt recovers smuggled artifacts from Germany
http://www.thecairopost.com/news/143181/culture/egypt-recovers-smuggled-artifacts-from-germany


Sunday, March 22, 2015

Museum Pieces - Belt buckle inscribed for Nefertari

Belt buckle inscribed for Nefertari

Egyptian
1295–1186 B.C.

Findspot, Thebes, Egypt

DIMENSIONS
Height x width: 4.7 x 11.5 cm (1 7/8 x 4 1/2 in.)

ACCESSION NUMBER
04.1955

MEDIUM OR TECHNIQUE
Silver, gold, feldspar, carnelian, blue frit, glass

Inscribed for “the Osiris, great royal wife, his beloved, mistress of Lower Egypt.”

Provenance
Said to be from the Valley of the Queens (Thebes), Tomb of Queen Nefertari (QV 66). 1904: purchased for the MFA from Mohamed Mohassib, Luxor, Egypt by Albert M. Lythgoe as part of a group (04.1953-04.1956, 04.1766-04.1769) for £40. (Accession Date: January 1, 1904)

Credit Line
Emily Esther Sears Fund

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Wednesday Weekly # 70

Welcome to the Wednesday Weekly, your weekly dose of links to Egyptology news, articles, blogs, events and more!

Nile Magazine
THE ANCIENT WORLD ONLINE

Open Access Egyptological Publications of the Medelhavsmuseet
http://ancientworldonline.blogspot.nl/2015/03/open-access-egyptological-publications.html

EGYPTIANS

Tutankhamun's Egypt
http://tim-theegyptians.blogspot.nl/2015/03/tutankhamuns-egypt.html

EGYPT CENTRE, SWANSEA

What have museums ever done for us?
http://egyptcentre.blogspot.nl/2015/03/what-have-museums-ever-done-for-us.html

DAILY MAIL ONLINE

Now THAT'S a heavy tax bill! Ancient Egyptian receipt suggests coins weighing 220lbs would have been needed to pay duty
http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-2997457/Now-S-heavy-tax-bill-Ancient-Egyptian-receipt-suggests-coins-weighing-220lbs-needed-pay-duty.html?ITO=1490&ns_mchannel=rss&ns_campaign=1490

LIVESCIENCE

Ancient Receipt Proves Egyptian Taxes Were Worse Than Yours
http://www.livescience.com/50139-ancient-egyptian-tax-receipt.html

AL-AHRAM WEEKLY

Finding the missing pieces
http://weekly.ahram.org.eg/News/10694/47/Finding-the-missing-pieces.aspx

GEBEL EL SILSILA SURVEY PROJECT

First week
http://gebelelsilsilaepigraphicsurveyproject.blogspot.nl/2015/03/first-week.html

ANCIENT EGYPTIAN DEMONOLOGY PROJECT

Clawed Ancient Egyptian Bes-image
http://www.demonthings.com/claws/

Coffin of Djehuty-nakht (B2Bo)
http://www.demonthings.com/coffin-of-djehuty-nakht-b2bo/

ACROSSBORDERS

End of excavation in the cemetery SAC5
http://acrossborders.oeaw.ac.at/end-of-excavation-in-the-cemetery-sac5/

AcrossBorders 2015: looking back at a fruitful season
http://acrossborders.oeaw.ac.at/acrossborders-2015-looking-back-at-a-fruitful-season/

THE ASOR BLOG

Inscribed Statue Bases from Ptolemaic Alexandria
http://asorblog.org/2015/02/27/inscribed-statue-bases-from-ptolemaic-alexandria/

AMARA WEST PROJECT BLOG

Amara West 2015: why work with our archaeological project?
http://blog.amarawest.britishmuseum.org/2015/03/16/amara-west-2015-why-work-with-our-archaeological-project/

THE ART NEWSPAPER

Better digs for Liverpool’s mummies
http://www.theartnewspaper.com/articles/Better-digs-for-Liverpools-mummies/37287

EES DELTA SURVEY

Normal weather resumed…
http://deltasurvey.tumblr.com/post/113342798753/normal-weather-resumed

End of our first week of work
http://deltasurvey.tumblr.com/post/113502816153/end-of-our-first-week-of-work

The size and importance of Tell Buweib
http://deltasurvey.tumblr.com/post/113693825483/the-size-and-importance-of-tell-buweib

New Kingdom settlement
http://deltasurvey.tumblr.com/post/113873408273/new-kingdom-settlement

SCIENCE & SCHOLARSHIP IN POLAND

Polish archaeologists in the forgotten capital of ancient Egypt
http://scienceinpoland.pap.pl/en/news/news,404141,polish-archaeologists-in-the-forgotten-capital-of-ancient-egypt.html

MEDICINE AND MAGIC IN ANCIENT EGYPT

Karnak Temple of Khonsu
http://nefertotsie.blogspot.nl/2015/03/karnak-temple-of-khonsu.html

CAIRO POST

Ancient Egyptian capital Amarna mapped through satellite imagery system
http://www.thecairopost.com/news/141060/culture/ancient-egyptian-capital-amarna-mapped-through-satellite-imagery-system-2

3,000 year-old tomb of ancient Egyptian nobleman discovered in Luxor
http://www.thecairopost.com/news/141135/culture/3000-year-old-tomb-of-ancient-egyptian-nobleman-discovered-in-luxor

Taxes were a burden in ancient Egypt, too
http://www.thecairopost.com/news/141942/culture/taxes-were-a-burden-in-ancient-egypt-too

NICKY VAN DE BEEK

The stubborn travels of Alexine Tinne
http://nickyvandebeek.com/2015/03/the-stubborn-travels-of-alexine-tinne/

ANCIENT AVARIS

Burying The Dead In Avaris: Tombs From The Area R/IV
https://ancientavaris.wordpress.com/2015/03/16/burying-the-dead-in-avaris-tombs-from-the-area-riv/

BROOKLYN MUSEUM

Aida has been called the Opera of Operas
http://brooklynmuseum.tumblr.com/post/113426931324/aida-has-been-called-the-opera-of-operas-at-once

In ancient Egypt both men and women wore jewelry
http://brooklynmuseum.tumblr.com/post/113609206467/in-ancient-egypt-both-men-and-women-wore-jewelry

HARMAKIS

The tomb of King Tut
http://harmakis.net/en/archives/3572

DR ZAHI HAWASS

New Tombs Discovered In Luxor By The ARCE
http://www.drhawass.com/wp/new-tombs-discovered-in-luxor-by-the-arce/

NILE MAGAZINE

A City Vanishes
http://www.nilemagazine.com.au/latest-stories/2015/3/12/a-city-vanishes

When It Rains It Pours
http://www.nilemagazine.com.au/latest-stories/2015/3/11/when-it-rains-it-pours

A Pharaoh's Doomed Project Revealed
http://www.nilemagazine.com.au/latest-stories/2015/3/14/a-pharaohs-doomed-project-revealed

Open for business
http://www.nilemagazine.com.au/latest-stories/2015/3/15/open-for-business

A New Pyramid Discoverd
http://www.nilemagazine.com.au/latest-stories/2015/3/16/a-new-pyramid-discovered

UDEMY

BLUE: a symposium exploring aspects of life in ancient Egypt
https://www.udemy.com/bluesymposium/

PITT RIVERS MUSEUM

World Archaeology at the Pitt Rivers Museum: a characterization
http://www.prm.ox.ac.uk/world.html


Sunday, March 15, 2015

Finding the missing pieces

An important restoration of the colossal statue of Amenhotep III and Queen Tiye has been made possible by the discovery of long-missing fragments, writes Zahi Hawass

In 1859, the Frenchman Auguste Mariette found a huge double statue of Amenhotep III and his favourite queen, Tiye. Mariette was the first director of antiquities in Egypt and “discovered” famous monuments like the Serapeum at Saqqara and the Valley Temple of Chephren at Giza.

 The statue was found at Medinet Habu, the great temple of Ramses III in western Thebes, near the Roman Court. But the statue originally stood at the great southern gate of the funerary temple of Amenhotep III at Kom Al-Hitan, to the east of Medinet Habu.

When the statue was discovered, many sections of the figures of the king and queen were missing and had to be restored by filling in the gaps. The restoration work was carried out at the turn of the last century, by an Italian artist and restorer. He clearly showed the difference between the original parts of the statue and the restored portions.

The statue is now housed in the Cairo Museum, at the end of the main hall on the ground floor. The king is shown seated, with his hands placed flat on his knees. Queen Tiye sits beside him, with one arm placed around the king’s waist. Between them is a small statue of one of their daughters, perhaps the one who married her brother Akhenaton and was the mother of Tutankhamun.

Thursday, March 12, 2015

Polish archaeologists in the forgotten capital of ancient Egypt

The second season of fieldwork of the Polish archaeological project in Gebelein in southern Egypt has begun. The place was a very important centre in the history of ancient Egypt, but researchers still know little about it.

During last year's work, many monuments were discovered that allow scientists to fill blank spots in the history of the pharaohs. These include inscriptions, tombs of dignitaries and places of worship carved in the rocks.

A characteristic feature of the landscape in Gebelein are two limestone rocks that tower over the Nile and the surrounding desert.

"At the dawn of the history of ancient Egypt this was an administrative centre, very well positioned strategically and in terms of natural resources. There are signs that we are studying the capital of one of the proto-states, of which the Egyptian state emerged at the turn of the fourth and third millennia BC"- told PAP the project leader, Wojciech Ejsmond from the University of Warsaw.

This year's goal of the interdisciplinary research team is to continue the inventory of hundreds of tombs from different periods and document the inscriptions that cover the walls of rock shrines, discovered last year.

"This is a unique research material, shedding light on the religious beliefs and practices of ordinary people, as well as providing new information on cultural and religious policy of the Pharaohs" - emphasised Ejsmond.

According to the project leader, development and expansion of the network of contemporary fields and settlements threatens the monuments in Gebelein. Therefore, research is urgently needed to save as much as possible of the rich archaeological heritage of Egypt.