Saturday, December 12, 2009

2009.12.19

Version at BMCR home site
Ursula Rössler-Köhler, Tarek Tawfik (ed.), Die ihr vorbeigehen werdet ... Wenn Gräber, Tempel und Statuen sprechen: Gedenkschrift für Prof. Dr. Sayed Tawfik Ahmed. Deutsches Archäologisches Institut, Abteilung Kairo Sonderschrift 16. Berlin/New York: Walter de Gruyter, 2009. Pp. xi, 206; 27 p. of plates. ISBN 9783110203936. $123.00.
Reviewed by Joachim Friedrich Quack, Heidelberg University

Table of Contents

This volume is a collection of studies in memory of an Egyptian Egyptologist. Like so many examples of this genre of book, it contains a fairly mixed assemblage of topics (even if most authors manage to point out a convincing connection of their studies with the honored person) which can only be briefly resumed here.

S.S. Abdel el-Aal, "Some Blocks belonging to the Tias from Kafr el-Gebel" (p. 1-4). Publication of some isolated blocks which were found near Giza and once formed part of a funerary installation from a couple belonging to the royal family of the 19th dynasty. Only a part of the find is published here, for the total a separate study is promised. The reliefs show a depiction of the Apis-bull as well as adorations of Osiris and Sokar.

H. Altenmüller, "Prinz und Pharao--Amunherchopeschef und Ramses VI" (p. 5-16). Tomb KV 13, originally conceived for the royal chancellor Bay, was left unfinished after his fall from grace and later reused for the burial of two princes of the 20th dynasty. The author argues that the first of them, Amunherkhepshef, was not actually buried there (so the sarcophagus remained unused) but went on to become king Ramses VI, then using the tomb for the burial of his own son.

M.I. Ali, "La Chapelle de Thot à Abou Simbel. Est-ce le Mammisi du temple?" (p. 17-33). The author presents and translates the texts of the Thot-chapel of Abu Simbel (only printed hieroglyphs, no facsimiles or photographs; the texts are also available in KRI II, 748-751) and wants to see a function parallel to that of the Late-Period birth-houses (Mammisi). On p. 20 the author has mistakenly proposed "[giving] divine water", not recognizing the typical designation of a king as "divine semen". On p. 24 a crucial mistake has occurred; where the author wants to translate "mammisi", the text just says "house of him who sired him". On p. 26, instead of "vielleisse", the text has "office", and on p. 27, instead of "l'eau (divine) qui sort du chateau de la naissance divine du roi et de l'Ennéade dans sa totalité", the reviewer would propose "divine semen who came forth from the temple which the king has fashioned for the entire ennead". These corrections should lead to a reconsideration of the principal ideas of the author.

N. Arafa, "Les oreilles du roi au Nouvel Empire" (p. 35-49). The author assembles attestations of the title "ears of the king" as well as an epithet "who fills the ears of Horus with truth" (and variants) which, in the opinion of the reviewer, should better be kept separate.

R. Assem, "Scenes of the Djed-Pillar" (p. 51-58). A study of the different appearances of the djed-pillar in Theban tombs of the New Kingdom. The author concludes that scenes of all individual types can occur in tombs in all areas of the Theban necropolis as well as on all walls.

E. Bresciani, "Les temples de Medinet Madi. Passé et future d'une exploration archéologique dans le Fayoum" (p. 59-65). Illustrated with plans and drawings of some reliefs, the author gives an overview of the excavation of the Middle Kingdom temples of Medinet as well as the prospects for developing the site.

Z.Z. Gamal el-Deen, "Akhenaten's religion: A political view" (p. 67-80). Mainly focusing on royal titularies, the author traces the development of the position of the king towards solar religion. He adheres to the idea (formulated by Assmann) that Akhenaten's religion developed out of the so-called "New Solar Theology" and that he was assuming a central role as sole mediator between the god and the people.

M. Eldamaty, "Die leeren Kartuschen im Tempel von Edfu" (p. 81-101). Especially during the later Ptolemaic Period, the cartouches of royal inscriptions have sometimes been left empty instead of filling in a specific name. The author supposes that this fact is due to the political unrest which induced the priests to keep neutral about recognizing any pretender until the outcome was clear. Following the process of building and decorating the temple of Edfu, he proposes a very fine-tuned attribution of different types of completely or partially empty cartouches to different times of crisis, especially during the years 108/107, 88, 81/80 and 58-55.

S. Gohary, "New Evidence on the Duration of Mummification" (p. 103-104). Short remarks focusing on the evidence for the duration of the embalming process which can be gleaned from a stela published by T. Handoussa in the same volume.

N. Grimal, "Nouveaux fragments des Annales de Thoutmosis III à Karnak" (p. 105-120). During conservation work in the temple of Karnak, some blocks of the annals of Thutmosis III came to light which had been reused in constructions of Seti I. The author publishes ten blocks in photograph, facsimile drawing and translation. On block VII A, x+4 read probably "this noble god". For the important passage on block VII I, x+5 (discussed p. 111f.), the interpretation of the author is grammatically impossible, understand rather "lest others say that he made it in order to be a Ka-house [of ...]".

T. Handoussa, "A Stela of the God's Father Psametik" (p. 121-124). Publication of a stela discovered in excavations of S. Tawfik. Giving neither photographs nor hieroglyphs (only transliteration), the publication is of very limited usefulness. This is all the more to be regretted as something seems problematic with the dates given in the text: If the span of life indicated as 65 years, 10 months and 2 days and the date of birth year 1 of Nekho II, third month of summer, day 1 are both correct, then the date of year 27 (of Amasis), fourth month of inundation, day 28 can on no account be the actual date of the death.

Z. Hawass, "The Tomb of Keki: The Pyramid Builder" (p. 125-135). Publication of a tomb belonging to the upper cemetery of the workmen at Giza pyramid. The tomb contained an inscribed offering basin and had three burial shafts.

S. el-Kholi, "The Lost Colossus of the Mate of the Sphinx (Part II)" (p. 137-144). Second part of a study (the first appeared in Z. Hawass (ed.), Proceedings of the 8th International Congress of Egyptology, Volume II, Cairo 2003, p. 352-361). The author studies Arabic reports about a colossal statue of a seated woman with a child which once stood in the same axis as the great Sphinx, which he interprets as a figure of Isis. He tries to locate a temple of Isis where this statue once stood. Concerning the roads of Sepa discussed on p. 140, the study of J.-P. Corteggiani, in: Hommage à Serge Sauneron I (Cairo 1979), p.132-151 could have provided additional information.

G.T. Martin, "Ra'y, Head of the Bakery of the Lord of Truth" (p. 145-149). Publication of a relief block in Cambridge (E.SS.49) belonging to the chief baker of Ptah (not included in G.T. Martin, Stelae from Egypt and Nubia in the Fitzwilliam Museum, Cambridge c. 3000 BC--AD 1150, Cambridge 2005, because he argues that it is not a stela).

D. Mostafa, "Red Sea Ports, Eastern Desert Roads, Quarries and Mines in Greek and Roman Egypt" (p. 151-155). A compilation of the main harbors, roads, and quarries connected with the red sea region. Most of the relevant more recent literature is not cited by the author, e.g. the reports on the excavations and finds at Mons Claudianus.

C. Nauerth, "Tunika, Dalmatika oder Stola Olympika? Eine Anmerkung zum sogenannten Sakralgewand aus Sakkara" (p. 157-160). Some points concerning the well-known tunica from Saqqara are discussed anew. Especially, the author draws a comparison with the garment worn by the initiated of the Isis mysteries according to Apuleius.

A.M. Osman, "Ein verborgenes Allerheiligstes für Imn, den verborgenen Gott? Die architektonische Ausführung eines theologischen Konzepts" (p. 161-168). The author discusses the sanctuaries in the Akh-menu of Thutmosis III, the one in the main axis as well as the hidden one, and asks which one was the principal sanctuary. He prefers to see the hidden one as more important.

A. Radwan, "Sayed Tawfik in Saqqara. Einiges zu fünf Fundobjekten aus seinen Ausgrabungen" (p. 169-174). Publication of five stone objects from the excavations of S. Tawfik in Saqqara. On the broken lower part of a private stela (p. 172), read, instead of "wobei mein Körper unter (der Aufsicht) des Anubis, des Oberen der Gerechtfertigten (d.h. der seligen Toten), sein wird", rather chetî cher reshut "my body being in gladness". The formulation seems more typical for a monument erected during the lifetime of a person than for a funerary object. On the back pillar of the statue of Psametik (p. 174), instead of "alle Vorlesepriester, die herbeikommen werden, (sowohl) aus Memphis (als auch) aus Ägypten", translate rather "all lector-priests who will come from Memphis to the Kemet-area" (on Kemet as name of the Serapeum region at Saqqara, see H. Gauthier, Dictionnaire des noms géographiques contenus dans les texts hiéroglyphiques, tome cinquième, Cairo 1928, p. 199f.). Understand, instead of "(und) die Gnade (bei) Ptah-Sokar gehört dir", rather as a verbal sentence "May Ptah be gracious towards you".

H. Refai, Die "Herrin der Unterwelt" (p. 175-185). Discussion of a female deity called "the one who embraces (Horus)", often with the additional epithet "mistress of the netherworld". Her head is stylized as a snake and / or lion and crocodile. She is attested on papyri and coffins of the 21th dynasty. The reviewer seriously doubts that the snake and crocodile parts of her should be interpreted as symbols of regeneration (as proposed by the author); they could at least equally well stand for aspects of protection as being dangerous animals capable of warding off attacks.

H. Selim, "Four Pyramidia in the Cairo Museum" (p. 187-206). Publication of four pyramidia (New Kingdom and Saite Period) coming probably from Abydos. The name of the proprietor of the first one (Iraw) might be, in the opinion of the reviewer, a short form of something like the Nebirieraw attested as name of a king of the 17th dynasty. On the Pyramidion of Padiese, read the final word of west side of the vertical inscription simply as the definite article ta.

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