THE ROLE OF SEILA AND THE SEILA PYRAMID IN THE OLD KINGDOM
Special Guest Lecture by Kerry Muhlestein on Monday, March 4, at 6:00 p.m.
While we typically think of the Fayoum as not playing a significant role until the Middle Kingdom, mounting evidence suggests that it was rising in importance by the beginning of the Fourth Dynasty. Statues of Officials found at Seila, the topography of the area, and the Seila Pyramid all help us better understand the Fayoum during this era. Excavations at the Seila Pyramid show us that it is connected with the Nile Valley in surprising ways, and that this portion of the Fayoum was playing an economic and religious role, including being part of religious and royal innovations Snefru was enacting. Evidence of his pyramid cultic program and his titulary will be examined in this lecture.
SPACIALIZING THE HISTORIC TOPOGRAPHY OF ALEXANDRIA FOR SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT
Lecture by Mohamed Soliman on Wednesday, March 13, at 6:00 p.m.
Many historic maps have been produced of Alexandria, including Mahmoud Pasha el-Falaki's very accurate map that was produced in 1859. El-Falaki's map shows ancient natural and human landmarks that continue to exist, allowing for any topographic changes to be traced. However, Alexandria is an incredibly multilayered city, so further exploration is required.
The application of GPR in archaeological assessment is a known procedure. Three areas were in Alexandria were examined for this study using the GPR technique: Sultan Husain Street, Khartom Square and Nabi Danial Street. The GPR device utilized was the unique Russian system LOZA model, LOZA-V. The data was significant and has indicated the possibility of further archaeological remains. In this context, spatializing the historic topography of Alexandria via remote sensing and building a GIS database will support the national sustainable development strategy of 2030, specifically in the areas of urban development, road, traffic and transportation infrastructure, and the tourism industry.
RAMESSIDE QUEENS' TOMBS, THE BOOK OF THE DEAD, AND THE DEIR EL-MEDINA ICONOGRAPHIC TRADITION: A WORK IN PROGRESS
Lecture by Heather Lee McCarthy on Wednesday, March 20, at 6:00 p.m.
At the beginning of the 19th Dynasty, Ramesside royal women's tombs, located in the Valley of the Queens, were dramatically enhanced in several ways, including the creation of new, innovative decorative programs tailored to the gender, status, and roles of the royal female tomb owners. The development of these programs also involved the creation of new Book of the Dead vignettes and new arrangements of pre-existing vignettes. The Deir el-Medina artisans, who cut and decorated the royal tombs in western Thebes, were at the center of this creative activity, and they also developed a rich iconographic tradition of their own, which they applied to the decoration of their tombs and funerary papyri.
The twofold purpose of this research project is to examine the crucial role played by early 19th Dynasty Ramesside royal women's tombs in the development of Book of the Dead vignettes subsequently incorporated into the Deir el-Medina iconographic tradition and to systematically investigate the paths of transmission from queens' tombs to artisans' tombs. In order to achieve the research aims, the speaker is studying and photographing relevant scenes from twenty-one decorated Deir el-Medina private tombs, focusing on those that employed the same Book of the Dead spells used in the tombs of Ramesside royal women in the Valley of the Queens. In this lecture, an overview of the project will be presented as well as data gathered during the ongoing field research in Western Thebes.
LECTURE SEASON CLOSING EVENT
ENABLING ROOTED HISTORY: THE ESTABLISHMENT OF AN ONLINE INTERACTIVE ATLAS OF HISTORICAL CAIRO
Lecture by Yasser M. Ayad on Wednesday, March 27, at 6:00 p.m.
A wealth of documentation on Islamic monuments that date back to the early 7th century exists in multiple forms. Nevertheless, very few of those would have the information (historical account, stories, legends, descriptions, and reasons for construction), place identification, and illustrations/digital representations concurrently available. The broader aims of this project are to contribute to the digital preservation of the cultural as well as the architectural heritage of Medieval Cairo through the development of an online interactive atlas that is based on geospatial technologies. It is aimed to provide researchers as well as casual users with the ability to share information as well as to browse historical encounters of designated locations and monuments of interest. This presentation demonstrates an effort in this direction. It opens a discussion with regards to aspects of spatial and non-spatial data collection, inclusion and development techniques, data evaluation and quality assurance, data storage options, dissemination methods and their effectiveness, as well as procedures for possible future data updates and system maintenance and handling.