An Annotated & Illustrated Collection of Worldwide Links to Mythologies,
Fairy Tales & Folklore, Sacred Arts & Sacred Traditions
by Kathleen Jenks, Ph.D.
Pacifica Graduate Institute
EGYPT & THE SAHARA
MULTIPLE CATEGORY SITES
[Unless indicated, all annotations are from 1998 and remain current]
Also check under Other Archaeological Sites
& Egypt: General Information
This is the official antiquities site for the Egyptian Ministry of Tourism's "Tour Egypt." It is divided into a number of major categories. Among these are the following:
Under History you'll find excellent data based on work by Sir Alan Gardiner and others -- starts with the Lower Paleolithic c. 2 million BCE & moves onwards. This site's "History" category is the best I've seen on-line so far.
Under Monuments you'll find a huge collection of fine photos and descriptive essays on Pharaonic, Graeco-Roman, Christian, Islamic, and English/French monuments; ancient monasteries and churches (e.g., check St. Catherine's and follow hyperlinks); mosques; museums; and famous markets (one of which, the Khan, may, it's claimed, have been linked to the spice trade that indirectly drove Columbus to "discover" the New World).
Under Mythology although many entries are too brief, others also provide generally better data than exists on most such on-line summaries.
The Virtual Museum is handsomely done but doesn't offer much art for each period.
The Glossary of Terms: from "abacus" to "zodiac," this is an alphabetical listing of dozens of names, terms, concepts, architectural elements, etc. -- definitions are painfully brief, but at least they're a starting place.
The categories also include "Construction of Pyramids"; "History of Christianity in Egypt"; "Historical Astrology in Egypt"; and a complete Book of the Dead (Budge's dated version).
At the bottom of the first page is a link back to Tour Egypt's mega-homepage.http://www.sis.gov.eg/
This is another massive site filled with multiple categories and run by the Egyptian State Information Service (SIS). Of special relevance are sections named "Culture," "History," and "Images from Egypt."
Under Culture will be found many topics of interest, including a site on the first Egyptian story. Modern as well as ancient culture is covered here.
Under History among more familiar offerings, is an excellent essay, "Earliest Egyptian Chemical Manuscripts" by Professor Hamed A. Ead, and another by the same author on Egyptian Sciences (alchemy, smiths, glass, dyes, etc -- with fine drawings from ancient art); there's also an intriguing section on an amazing variety of ancient Egyptian sports, each illustrated by a scene from ancient art.
Near the top of this site you can click on a poignant "Thebes' Message to World," written by noted author Naguih Mahfouz and relating to the terrorist attack in Thebes in December 1997 [for a first hand account of that day by Egyptologist W. Raymond Johnson, see my Other Archaeological Sites & check under Deir El Bahari].
Like many other huge sites, this one provides a search engine.http://www.arab.net/egypt/index.html
This is ArabNet's homepage for Egypt. Data is generally fairly basic but often quite useful. The site, like the preceding two, is also divided into major categories: Overview, History, Geography, Business, Culture (oddly, you'll find a nice little essay on ancient Beekeeping under this category), Government, Transport, Tour, Country Links. The site also offers a Search engine that sometimes turns up photos unlisted elsewhere on the site (e.g., dates, papyrus).http://guardians.net/egypt/
This ambitious collection of links and photos is "Guardian's Egypt," a huge and highly popular non-academic site created in 1994 by Andrew Bayuk, an enthusiastic lover of Egypt who is currently taking classes at Yale and planning a career in Egyptology. About his site, Bayuk writes: "...The goal of the site is to present Egypt in an archaeologically responsible light and create THE most complete and inclusive ancient Egypt website on the Internet."
The site offers a dizzying number of hyperlinks to everything Egyptian: mummies, pyramids, myth & religion, hieroglyphs, sites & monuments, "cool digs" (reports from the field of archaeology), art & music, travel, chat lines, and a kids' section. There's a large and excellent selection of books on ancient Egypt that can be ordered on-line through amazon.com. There's an "Egypt News" section containing recent developments in Egypt as well as information on exhibits outside Egypt (e.g., check the wonderful faience data in a May 1998 "Gifts of the Nile" article about a Cleveland exhibit). There's even a live satellite photo of Egypt updated every three hours (unfortunately, it's superimposed over a map of the region which destroys the magic -- but you can at least see wisps of clouds on the horizons).
Bayuk travels frequently to Egypt and then posts his latest photos. Some require plug-ins to view. Since I thought I had the "Quicktime" plug-in needed, I clicked and waited for a 3-minute download. I washed some dishes, returned to find my machine was still downloading, so I washed another dish. Only after the seconds had ticked off to "zero" was I told that I didn't have the right plug-in after all; when I clicked the conveniently provided plug-in button, I learned that I could buy it for $30. That kind of technological hurdle makes me cranky so I skipped further exploration of the feature.
Flaws: Ths site is in frames, which means you have to plow through each section without being able to extract a separate URL-address for those pages of greatest interest to you. I personally find this extremely tedious and fail to understand why webmasters find frames so alluring. As for the text, Bayuk's enthusiasm for his subject leads him to use too many capital letters, which gives the site a very busy "gee-whiz, hey, look at this!" appearance. Also, the pages often seem peppered with too many "New!" ikons, with no indication of how new they are (still cranky, I went digging on 10/10/98 and, as far as I can tell, the latest update was in May 1998, which makes everything at least 4-5 months old, hardly "new."). Bayuk created his site, however, for the general public, not for scholars, and its great popularity confirms the appeal of his style for the non-academic. Explore the links, avoid the prose that goes with his photos, and you'll be fine. Despite my crankiness, his enthusiasm is wonderful and that alone covers many flaws <smile>.http://www.newton.cam.ac.uk/egypt/
This University of Cambridge, UK, site by working Egyptologist, Nigel Strudwick, is my kind of site. It's scholarly, up-to-date, well maintained, clear, nicely chatty at times, and with great text and several hundred beautifully photographed, clickable images (go to his Picture Index near the bottom of his opening side-menu for a full range of choices).
For some of his photos, Strudwick also offers the Quicktime feature (see above under Guardian's Egypt), but instead of making me wait through a tedious download before telling me I don't have the right plug-in, his refreshingly polite program tells me upfront what I do have (and I do have Quicktime, but it seems not to be "enabled"; when I clicked on the freebee version, I discovered it'd take about 35 minutes to download so I moved on).
The site contains hyperlinks to sites in many categories (including some to sites of a "semi-commercial nature"). The site has its own News & Gossip section (with a surprising number of obituaries for elderly Egyptologists). It also contains Strudwick's work on the tomb of Senneferi, with maps, floor plan, 6 wonderful samples of painted ceiling designs, and, if you click on Architecture, scroll down and click on Chapel, scroll down and click on "description of how paintings are documented," you'll find a lengthy, fascinating paper on making facsimiles in tombs, the shortage of artists, the high cost of color printing, problems with photgraphing huge facsimile sheets, etc. Throughout, Strudwick offers data you won't find on any other site.
Flaws: None, except for minor navigation difficulties. I highly recommend this one.http://www.akhet.co.uk
This site, created and run by Iain Hawkins, who uses data from the National Museums of Scotland (NMS), offers good basic information in a number of areas: mythology (e.g., the tale of Isis and Osiris); funerary practices; "afterlife" art (where you'll find a link to "Birds & Feathers" which looks at a number of really beautiful wing-spreads in coffin art); ancient art & sculpture; Amarna; a complete list of kings; a "clickable" mummy (despite the title, the data is sound); Scottish Egyptologists; museum & Egyptology news (e.g., mummy medical exams, pyramid shafts); etc. I like this site and have found Hawkins a generous e-mail respondent (see under Amarna).http://www.powerup.com.au/~ancient/index.html
This site is Mark T. Rigby's home page for a number of archeological sites (as well as the Cairo and Luxor museums containing their findings). These sites include Giza, Saqqara, the Valley of the Kings, Kom Ombo, Abu Simbel, Philae, Aswan. The photos are generally quite good. There is also a chronology of the rulers of Egypt, a page on Tutankhamun, another on "Crusing the Nile" (especially good photos here), some wonderful NASA photographs of the region (check under "Egypt from Space") and a brief page on love poems. Rigby has a good eye, gives careful data on the artifacts, and has created a well designed and appealing site. (He also includes six paintings of Egypt done by his Australian father.)http://www.sis.gov.eg/egyptinf/culture/html/cultfrm.htm
Egypt's State Information Service (SIS) offers a Culture page listing museums (descriptive, but mostly without any images), writers, artists, landmarks, etc. Under "Literature," click on "Ancient Egyptians wrote the first short story" for a nice little tale. Under "Life," is a short piece on women and their lack of choice in marriage until the 26th dynasty. This website, overall, is more essay than image, but some of the essays are quite excellent.
Alexandria/ Amarna/ Art & Artifacts/Daily Life in Ancient Egypt/Egypt: General Information, Travel, Etc./
Egypt: through the Eyes of Photographers & Artists/ Hieroglyphs, Papyrus & Texts/ Links to the Links/
Men of Ancient Egypt/ Multiple Category Sites/ Mythology/ Other Archaeological Sites/ Pyramids/
Religious Beliefs&Practices/ Women of Ancient Egypt/ The Sahara
If you have comments or suggestions,
my email address will be found near the bottom of my home page.
Please note that I cannot help with homework questions -- you will find useful links with tips for doing your own web searches on my Search Engine page. You will also find excellent resources on my General Reference page. Good luck with your projects!
18 February 2000 [all links checked];
2 March 2000: sadly, transferred Bolman's "dead" link to my new Graveyard page;
23-24 January 2003: re-designed, un-Webcom-d, links-check;
shifted 3 links here from Gen. Info page (interoz, SIS, & ArabNet);
26 January 2003: shifted Rigby link here from "Other Archaeological Sites" page.