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Monday, April 29, 2024

Latest ARCE-NC lecture, by Aidan Dodson, is now available on YouTube

Dr. Aidan Dodson's "The Nubian Pharaohs of Egypt," the latest lecture sponsored by the Northern California chapter of the American Research Center in Egypt, is now available on our YouTube channel. To view it, please go to .

To see what else is available on the ARCE-NC channel, and to subscribe to the channel, please go to .

Glenn Meyer
ARCE-NC Publicity Director

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Project to sequence genomic variants of 100,000 present-day Egyptians as well as 200 mummies.

The Egypt Genome Project

The recently launched Egyptian Genome Project aims to sequence genomic variants of 100,000 apparently healthy Egyptian adults, with around 8,000 individuals suspected to have a genetic disease, as well as 200 ancient Egyptian mummies. The project will provide the first comprehensive genomic dataset from Egypt and North Africa.

This is a preview of subscription content, access via your institution

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Sunday, April 28, 2024

MFA Boston Returns a Looted Egyptian Coffin to Sweden

MFA Boston Returns a Looted Egyptian Coffin to Sweden

MFA Boston (the Museum of Fine Arts) Returned to Sweeden a Coffin Used to Bury an Egyptian Child Named Paneferneb.

Apr 27, 2024By Angela Davic, News, Discoveries, In-depth Reporting, and Analysis
MFA Boston
The museum of fine arts, Boston. Via Wikipedia

MFA Boston (the Museum of Fine Arts) returned a looted Egyptian coffin to Sweden. Overall, this coffin was a burial place of an Egyptian child named Paneferneb between about 1295 and 1186 B.C.E. This process happened after a discovery, which showed evidence of the artefact being stolen from the Gustavianum, Uppsala University Museum, around 1970.

The coffin resurfaced in 1985… How?

MFA Boston
An Egyptian child's coffin. Via the museum.

In 1920, the British School of Archaeology in Egypt discovered the coffin in Gurob, Egypt. Flinders Petrie oversaw the excavation. He and his wife Hilda Urlin dug up several significant archaeological sites. One of his most important discoveries in 1896 was the Merneptah Stele. Additionally, in 1905, he found the Proto-Sinaitic script, which is the ancestor of nearly all alphabetic scripts.


The Egyptian authorities established a system of "partage," or the dividing of findings, at that time. It divided up the findings of the archaeological digs between Egypt and foreign sponsors. As part of that arrangement, in 1922, the coffin transferred to Uppsala University's Victoria Museum of Egyptian Antiquities. However, by at least 1970, the 43-inch-long, ceramic tomb vanished from sight.


carter workman coffin,MFA Boston
Howard Carter and an unidentified Egyptian workman examine one of Tutankhamun's coffins, 1925, via the Griffith Institute.

The coffin resurfaced in 1985, when the MFA purchased it from one Olof S. Liden. Liden said he represented Eric Ståhl, the artist. He produced a fake letter in which Ståhl purportedly described excavating the coffin in 1937 near Amada, Egypt. Liden also produced forged certification papers for the coffin, allegedly from Swedish specialists. Ståhl, noted the museum in its announcement of the return of the coffin, "is not known to have participated in any excavation in Egypt".

MFA Boston – the Top Tier of Collections
Three Egyptian Gold mummy masks of Pharaohs from ancient egypt
Gold masks of King Psusennes, center, and the gold coffin and mummy mask of King Amenemope, from the royal necropolis of Tanis discovered in 1939-1940 by Pierre Montet, the first intact Pharaohs tombs ever discovered.

When curators at the MFA saw a picture of the coffin during excavation in the 2008 book Unseen Images: Archive Photographs in the Petrie Museum, they immediately smelt rat foul. They got in touch with the Gustavianum staff after noticing the disparity. The procedure of retrieving the piece began, and the museum's website said it got deaccessioned in October.

"It has been wonderful working with our colleagues in Uppsala on this matter, and it is always gratifying to see a work of art return to its rightful owner", said Victoria Reed, senior curator of provenance at the MFA. "In this case, we were fortunate to have an excavation photograph showing where and when the coffin was found, so that we could begin to correct the record", she also added.


Ancient jewelry treasures from intact egyptian tomb Pharaoh Psusennes Tanis
From Psusennes' treasure : a lapis-lazuli necklace, a 1,8 kg solid gold bracelet. Cairo Egyptian museum, photos Global Egyptian Museum.

The MFA Boston's department of the art of ancient Egypt, Nubia, and the Near East includes some 65,000 artifacts. Also, sculpture, jewellery, coffins, mummies, mosaics, and more. This puts it in the top tier of collections of its kind worldwide. Also, there are other institutions, such as the Grand Egyptian Museum in Giza and London's British Museum. The Gustavianum houses a collection of about 5,000 examples.

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Friday, April 26, 2024

Reminder: In-person lecture 3 pm this Sunday by Aidan Dodson. Don't miss it!

The American Research Center in Egypt, Northern California chapter, and the UC Berkeley Department of Middle Eastern Languages and Cultures invite you to attend a lecture by Dr. Aidan Dodson, University of Bristol:

The Nubian Pharaohs of Egypt
Sunday April 28, 2024, 3 PM Pacific Time
Room 20, Social Sciences Building, UC Berkeley

This in-person lecture will be recorded for later publication on YouTube.

Statues of various rulers of the late 25th Dynasty–early Napatan period. From left to right: Tantamani, Taharqa (rear), Senkamanisken, again Tantamani (rear), Aspelta, Anlamani, again Senkamanisken; Kerma Museum. (Image from Wikimedia Commons.)
About the Lecture:

For a few decades during the 8th to 7th centuries BC, there was a remarkable reversal of the age-old imperial domination of Nubia by Egypt. In the wake of the fragmentation of the Egyptian state during the 8th century, the Kushite state that had evolved in Nubia since Egyptian withdrawal at the beginning of the 11th century expanded northwards, ultimately absorbing the south of Egypt, including Thebes itself. Having established themselves as overlords of the various regional rulers in Egypt, the Nubian pharaohs led a national revival in Egypt, until an Assyrian onslaught drove them back into Nubia, where their composite of Egyptian and Nubian culture would survive into the 4th century AD.

About the Speaker:

Aidan Mark Dodson is an English Egyptologist and historian. He has been honorary professor of Egyptology at the University of Bristol since August 1, 2018. Born in London on September 11, 1962, he studied at Langley Grammar School (1975–81), before moving to Collingwood College, Durham (1981-2). He completed a BA at the University of Liverpool (1985), and an MPhil (1986, museum practice and archaeology) and PhD (1995, Egyptology) at Christ's College, Cambridge. He began teaching at the University of Bristol in October 1996, also holding the post of Simpson Professor of Egyptology at the American University in Cairo from January to July 2013. Dodson was elected a Fellow of the Society of Antiquaries of London in 2003. His primary research interests concern Ancient Egypt, including dynastic history and chronology, tomb architecture, sarcophagus and coffin design, canopic equipment, and the history of Egyptology; he is also a historian of late 19th and early 20th century navies, and has written on the royal tombs of Great Britain. He is the author of some 27 books and 400 articles and reviews. His latest book, The Nubian Pharaohs of Egypt: Their Lives and Afterlives, was published by the American University in Cairo Press at the end of 2023.

Parking is available in UC lots all day on weekends, for a fee. Ticket dispensing machines accept debit or credit cards. Parking is available in lots around the Social Sciences Building, and in lots along Bancroft. A map of the campus is available online at .

About ARCE-NC:

For more information, please visit,, http://www.arce-nc.org, and To join the chapter or renew your membership, please go to and select "Berkeley, CA" as your chapter when you sign up.

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