I came across this stunning image of from the back of King Tut’s gold throne (left, c. 1332-1322 BC) tonight. Isn’t it gorgeous? (Click on the image to enlarge it, if you don’t believe me.) I love the striking, bold colors. And I especially love that Tutankhamun is depicted with the lil’ Amarna-style belly that his dad popularized in Egyptian art (see the relief Ahkenaten and His Family, c. 1353-1336 BC, for one another example of the Amarna style).
This throne shows Tutakhamun being anointed with perfume by his wife, Ankhesenamun. I love the fine details in Ankhesanumun’s robe, and I especially love that you can see the outline of her legs beneath the flowing material. It gives the impression that the material is very lightweight. (There is a little more information about this throne here.)
Speaking of King Tut, have you seen the reconstruction of his face? In 2005, National Geographic reported that scientists used 3-D CT scans to reconstruct the first mummy of the ancient pharaoh. Kinda cool, but also kinda creepy. Check out this image of the bust on display at the Field Museum in Chicago – it totally reminds me of the heads that the witch Mombi stored in the “Return to Oz” movie. Yikes!
The waters of the Nile came from annual rains in the tropics to the south of Egypt. The Nile rose in early July, and in October it receded, leaving little water and a layer of black, fertile soil — inspiring people there to call the area the Black Land. Continue reading Ancient Civilization Appears Along the Nile
Arles (Arelate) was the first Roman town to be built in Gaul after the 49 BC defeat of Pompey’s forces at Marseille (Massilia) by Caesar during the Civil War. Caesar had also constructed his fleet there. A colony for veterans of the Sixth Legion was founded in 46 BC as Colonia Julia Paterna Arelate Sextanorum by Tiberius Claudius Nero, father of the future Emperor Tiberius. Continue reading Athena Review : Sites and Museums in Roman Gaul: Arles
With Alexander’s conquests also came significant cultural change. In West Asia and North Africa, well-to-do tradesmen, intellectuals and aristocrats who were neither Greek nor Macedonian, including those who were Jews, had begun developing an interest in things Greek — to the annoyance of those who believed that the old ways were best. From Marseille to India, Greek became the language of intellectuals. The Greek gymnasium became popular. It was a place for bathing and physical exercise Continue reading Hellenism & Jews
By the banks of the Nile, across the river from Thebes, a three-tiered temple was found beneath hundreds of tons of sand tens of centuries after its construction. The temple is a reflection of the mortuary temple of Mentuhotep II, and was constructed alongside that eleventh-dynasty structure. However, the temple of Hatshepsut is far larger than that of Mentuhotep. The architect was Senmut, Hatshepsut’s lover and a member of her court with more than 20 titles. Senmut designed the temple Continue reading Queen Hatshepsut’s Temple Deir El Bahri
These poems are taken from Hatshepsut, Speak to Me by Ruth Whitman [Wayne SU Press, Detroit: 1992]
When I was six
my father Thutmose the First
lifted me up to sit beside him
on his throne of Amen. Continue reading Hatshepsut Poetry : Speak to Me