Images of heaven: Coffin decoration in the Tomb of the Priests of Amun (21st Dynasty)

conférence en anglais (en collaboration avec AERE)
Di 21-01-2018

During the 21st Dynasty, Egypt experienced severe economic crisis and political unrest. And yet, Theban workshops produced some of the most complex artefacts ever created in the ancient world. The ‘yellow’ coffins, as they are known today, represent a deep break with tradition. From the archaeological point of view this rupture is detected in several aspects, such as the collective nature of the burial grounds and the exclusive use of anthropoid coffins in nested assemblages. However, the originality of the ‘yellow’ type lies on the role played by visual culture as a way to convey a heterogeneous set of ideas regarding the afterlife and corporative values of the priesthood of Amun in Thebes.

The Tomb of the Priests of Amun found intact in 1891 uncovered the largest collection of ‘yellow’ coffins so far discovered, allowing a unique glimpse on the dynamics of funerary material culture during one of the most obscure periods of Egyptian History. In this presentation we will examine coffin ensembles sent to Portugal, Italy and Belgium aiming at reconstructing its symbolism and understanding how these objects shaped workshop practices, management strategies and, most importantly, how they contributed to redifining ‘ownership’ of funerary artefacts.

Rogério Sousa is Researcher at the Centre of Classical and Humanistic Studies (University of Coimbra). In his PhD he studied the iconographic representations of the heart in ancient Egypt. In 2009 Sousa started to study the coffins found in Bab el-Gasus (Lot VIII). He is now carrying out the comparative study of coffin decoration in the Theban coffins dating from the 21st Dynasty. Currently he coordinates the Gate of the Priests Project involving an international consortium of museums and universities.

Conférencier Rogério Sousa, University of Coimbra


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10:30 –12:00

€ 10 / € 8
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