The lecture today went quite well. Corona was unaware of daylight savings time though, so she was an hour late, which was kind of expected (everything in SL was late today). So, instead, I held an impromptu live poetry reading. It went very well. More people were able to come to it than the lecture. But, anyway, the lecture transcript can be found below:
[13:03] Chraeloos: Thanks to everyone for coming! I’ll ask that all comments and questions are held until after the lecture, when we open the floor for discussion. If you like what you hear and/or want to support in-world events, feel free to tip. The tip jar is the globe in the centre of the fireplace.
[13:03] Chraeloos: If you are interested in keeping up to date feel free to check out our blog, new topics will be posted before the events: http://www.epithetandsynonym.info/
Our website is also a great way to stay up to date: http://www.epithetandsynonym.biz/
Event Calendar: http://www.epithetandsynonym.biz/apps/calendar/
If you want an invite to the group let me know 🙂
[13:03] Chraeloos: Also, we just released a new magazine! You can download it for free here: http://www.epithetandsynonym.biz/easmagazine.htm
[13:03] Chraeloos: Thanks Corona, it’s all yours 🙂
[13:06] Corona Anatine: ok a bit of background first
[13:06] Corona Anatine: this talk only looks at the developments up to the end of the Old Kingdom
[13:07] Corona Anatine: and will need breaking down into more than one week
[13:07] Corona Anatine: Developments in Ancient Egyptian funerary structures and mummification procedure to the end of the sixth dynasty
[13:07] Corona Anatine: I will assume people know the difference between upper and lower egypt -if not say now
[13:08] Karlingo Lorefield: raises hand
[13:08] Corona Anatine: and i will briefly cover that
[13:08] Karlingo Lorefield: “im naive”
[13:08] Karlingo Lorefield: had my head stuck in japanese books all my life, so go ahead pls.
[13:08] Rhiannon of the Birds: Yeah, upper is lower down on the map and lower is higher up on the map
[13:08] Corona Anatine: ok upper egypt is the region of the nile valley as far north as the delta
[13:08] Corona Anatine: lower is the delta region
[13:08] Karlingo Lorefield: ok
[13:08] Corona Anatine: the two were originally different nations
[13:09] Corona Anatine: that were unified at the start of the Old Kingdom
[13:09] Corona Anatine: this would be long after the civilization i postulate as existing several millennia earlier
[13:10] Corona Anatine: although some relics form then may have still be around
[13:10] Corona Anatine: but this This is the historical / archaeology based Ancient Egypt
And I will concentrate on the standard model in the main
[13:10] Corona Anatine: The differential preservation of tombs and contents due to their desert location away from valuable agricultural land together with the collection preferences of early antiquarians; has meant that most surviving material culture of ancient egypt is related to or derived from funerary structures.
[13:11] Corona Anatine: In contrast to domestic settlement structures which were normally along the Nile have been built over by the many centuries of subsequent development.
[13:11] You have added “Mormon Tabernacle” to your Landmarks folder.
[13:12] Corona Anatine: The quantity of funerary remains and structures; together with the undisturbed nature of non valuable materials, and the environmental equilibrium allow the phases of tomb development to be traced traced from earliest times.
[13:12] Corona Anatine: The tomb development history reveals a complex sequence up to the first intermediate period with many changes stemming from political manoeuvring between the king and the priesthood over royal attempts to retain distinctiveness of burial .
[13:13] Corona Anatine: In the early period through to the Old kingdom there were continual changes and improvements in tomb construction, culminating in the building of the pyramid tombs of the sixth dynasty,
[13:14] Corona Anatine: After which the first intermediate period saw a major break in social stability with endemic tomb robbery. To which the Egyptians of the Middle kingdom responded to by turning more to use of hidden rock cut tombs.
[13:15] Corona Anatine: The earliest inhabitants of Egypt were Neanderthals [ according to one source anyway]
[13:15] Corona Anatine: [ which i don’t have details of – this was written from a univ library back in 95]
[13:15] Corona Anatine: Of these few graves are known as , even thought burying their dead, they did so without definite ceremony or grave goods . Of graves in the main period of predynastic burials , most come from Upper Egypt, with few known from central areas of Lower/delta Egypt, possibly because the bodies were sunk into marsh pools, or exposed for scavenger consumption.
[13:16] Corona Anatine: perhaps even devoted to such animals in a similar way to Himalayan sky burial.
[13:16] Corona Anatine: [ for example this recent item of news=
[13:18] Corona Anatine: The early Nile dwellers clearly believed in an afterlife, as predynastic burials often contain grave goods . moreover the bodies themselves were frequently wrapped in skins or matting, and crouched on the left side as if asleep and awaiting the rebirth often alluded to in texts of much later date.
[13:19] Corona Anatine: Only the higher status members of the community received formal burial, and according to one source few women and children.
[13:19] Corona Anatine: It is unlikely however that the majority of the dead were merely thrown into the fields or the river ‘as the beasts of the field that perish” as they would not have been perceived as inferior by their social peers, whatever the views of the higher classes.
[13:20] Corona Anatine: Inhumation in fields and cemeteries attached to settlements being sufficient to account for their lack of survival
[13:20] Corona Anatine: body exposure of the sort in the news item would also account for this
[13:21] Corona Anatine: assuming that the practice was the same further south
[13:21] Corona Anatine: Richer burials surviving more often due to placement in the desert nearer to the west, the lands of the gods and ancestors [ probably the same thing in many cases]
[13:22] Corona Anatine: While no two graves were ever identical in all respects, they do shows trends in general
[13:22] Corona Anatine: The typology of graves and associated goods/customs of predynastic burials are conventionally divided into 3 main phases
[13:22] Corona Anatine: Badarian 5500 to 4000 BCE
[13:23] Corona Anatine: .
[13:23] Corona Anatine: Amratean / Naqada I 4000 to 3500 BCE
[13:23] Corona Anatine: .
[13:23] Corona Anatine: Gerzean / Naqada II 3500 to 3100 BCE
[13:23] Corona Anatine: .
[13:23] Corona Anatine: [Calibrated 14C dates]
[13:23] sofa cushion whispers: Hi DaVinci Batista! Touch me for Menu. Say /1a to Adjust.
[13:24] Corona Anatine: The graves rarely have any surviving superstructure, and where existing it is limited to a simple piled tumulus of sand or gravel backfill
[13:24] Corona Anatine: Badarian graves of Upper Egypt were usually sited on a low bank alongside a dry and often small wadi.
[13:25] Corona Anatine: At first shallow, burials deepened to around 1 metre as the Badarian progressed
[13:25] Corona Anatine: Graves for women were normally oval, those for men rectangular,
[13:25] Corona Anatine: Both dug into the sand or gravel at the desert edge
They were always single occupant pits just large enough for a flexed and tightly contracted unclothed body
[13:26] Corona Anatine: with concave floors, or
[13:26] Corona Anatine: levelled if a wealthier occupant
[13:27] Corona Anatine: Occasionally a layer of clean sand was added
[13:27] Corona Anatine: while some also had a basic wicker palisade set along the sides to retain loose soil
[13:28] Corona Anatine: This basic pit grave effectively persisted in use for the poorest burials right through to the end of the new Kingdom and beyond
[13:29] Corona Anatine: Inhumations were usually loosely wrapped in a reed mat
[13:29] Corona Anatine: linen folds
[13:29] Corona Anatine: or a goat skin
[13:30] Corona Anatine: A similar mat or tray lining the base and partway up the sides which was then folded back over the body and any grave goods
[13:31] Corona Anatine: Normally bodies were buried with the head to west
[13:31] Corona Anatine: although this was not universal west of the Nile
[13:32] Corona Anatine: Female Badarian graves are noticeably larger
[13:32] Corona Anatine: although only males had exclusive cemetery areas [ and then only for some axiomatically]
[13:33] Corona Anatine: and only richer burials had grave gods
[13:33] Corona Anatine: goods*
[13:33] Corona Anatine: at first consisting of a single ceramic cup
[13:34] Corona Anatine: usually placed near the hands or head
[13:34] Corona Anatine: Later the quantity increased, some including models and illustrations of boats
[13:35] Corona Anatine: But most only had pottery and personal items
[13:35] Corona Anatine: in lower Egypt burials were generally closer to dwellings
[13:35] Corona Anatine: eg at merimda
[13:36] Corona Anatine: where an earlier cemetery of Badarian/early Amratean date
[13:36] Corona Anatine: built distant from habitation
[13:36] Corona Anatine: was overlain by settlement expansion
[13:37] Corona Anatine: Cemeteries on unused land were probably fairly common in the earliest periods
[13:37] Corona Anatine: being built over or converted to agricultural use as the population expanded
[13:40] Corona Anatine: The Merimda
[13:40] Corona Anatine: dead were mostly crouched burials
[13:40] Corona Anatine: In reed lined graves but without funerary equipment
[13:41] Corona Anatine: Some graves , mostly of children were dug into house floors inhumed with the head towards the hearth
[13:41] sofa cushion whispers: Hi Gilles Kuhn! Touch me for Menu. Say /1a to Adjust.
[13:42] darcon Xue: 🙂
[13:42] Corona Anatine: In the Amratean / Naqada I graves became larger and progressively deeper
[13:43] Corona Anatine: and some were now protected with a lining of clay brick , wooden boards or wattle-work
[13:43] Karlingo Lorefield: Corona…
[13:43] Karlingo Lorefield: what is wattle-work?
[13:43] Corona Anatine: wicker and daub
[13:43] Karlingo Lorefield: gotcha, thank you.
[13:43] Corona Anatine: like african of celtic british huts
[13:44] Corona Anatine: *or
[13:44] Corona Anatine: Some had a roof of matting supported on wooden poles
[13:44] Corona Anatine: others used stone slabs
[13:44] Corona Anatine: while occasionally richer burials were in rock cut chambers
[13:45] Corona Anatine: With some graves a recess was added , enlarged in later burials
[13:46] Corona Anatine: the recess often concealed by a row of 8-12 tall jars
[13:46] Corona Anatine: arranged on the north side,
[13:46] Corona Anatine: containing burnt offerings ashes and food items
[13:47] Corona Anatine: [ not clear from my notes / essay if it is the recess or the jars that held these]
[13:47] Corona Anatine: the practice continuing until the early Old Kingdom
[13:48] Corona Anatine: the amratean saw development of some multiple burials of 2-5 individuals
[13:48] Corona Anatine: possibly family groups
[13:49] Corona Anatine: There is also evidence suggesting ossary practices
[13:49] Corona Anatine: hands and skulls often being absent
[13:49] Corona Anatine: and replaced with containers of ostrich egg or pottery or laid on or near the body
[13:50] Corona Anatine: Other graves have skeletal elements inverted misplaced or sorted by type
[13:50] Corona Anatine: Missing skulls are also known
[13:50] Corona Anatine: usually from female burials
[13:51] Corona Anatine: Some having the neck placed against the back wall of the grave recess
[13:51] Corona Anatine: in others the skull was placed on a brick or stone pile
[13:51] Corona Anatine: Several bodies reveal a two stage process
[13:52] Gilles Kuhn: you are still speaking of pre dynastic tombs?
[13:52] Corona Anatine: with burial until skeletal
[13:52] Corona Anatine: then disinterred cleaned and dismembered followed by reburial
[13:53] Corona Anatine: Many of these practices continued until late in the old Kingdom
[13:53] Corona Anatine: where they are possibly referred to in the pyramid text expression
[13:53] Corona Anatine: ” place the bones together”
[13:54] Corona Anatine: In the Amratean the number of grave goods also increased
[13:54] Corona Anatine: especially ceramics which were often of poor manufacture
[13:55] Corona Anatine: suggesting production especially for burial use
[13:55] Corona Anatine: The quantity of items led to larger tombs to accommodate the increases
[13:56] Corona Anatine: while the increased wealth in richer burials
[13:56] Corona Anatine: increased the incidence of grave robbing
[13:56] Corona Anatine: resulting in a further deepening of the burial pit to compensate
[13:56] Corona Anatine: until they required several steps down
[13:57] Corona Anatine: In the Gerzean and protodynastic [ Semainean]
[13:57] Corona Anatine: richer graves continued to increase in size
[13:58] Corona Anatine: and become up to 3 metres deep
[13:58] Corona Anatine: with some chambers lined with clay brick or wood
[13:58] Corona Anatine: some also being provided with a wooden roof
[13:59] Corona Anatine: Many bodies were supplied with a thick mud coating or a wooden coffin was used
[14:00] Corona Anatine: at other times the huddled body was placed under or inside a large terracotta vase
[14:00] Corona Anatine: sometimes with a second vase inverted to form a lid
[14:00] Corona Anatine: a method which continued in use up to the fifth Dynasty
[14:00] Corona Anatine: although rare after the third
[14:01] Corona Anatine: The use of such jars suggesting that he dead were now seen as requiring space and/or air in the tomb
[14:02] Corona Anatine: 905 of Gerzean burial were single
[14:02] Corona Anatine: with a greater proportion of child graves
[14:02] Corona Anatine: these were generally richer
[14:02] Corona Anatine: [ presumably the rich had more options to do so]
[14:03] Corona Anatine: and burials of all ages now tended to be wrapped in linen or fibre
[14:03] Corona Anatine: Towards the end of the period store rooms were added to some superstructures
[14:04] Corona Anatine: In the later Old kingdom this type of tomb began to be copied in poor burials
[14:04] Corona Anatine: however this was the maximum reached at the lower end of the social scale
[14:05] Corona Anatine: ok that takes us to the start of the Old kingdom
[14:05] Corona Anatine: so i will continue there next time
[14:05] Bryce Galbraith: thanks Corona!
[14:05] Chraeloos: Great job Corona, thanks!
[14:05] Corona Anatine: ty
[14:05] Rhiannon of the Birds: THANK YOU!
[14:05] Rhiannon of the Birds: THAT WAS AWESOME, AS USUAL
[14:06] darcon Xue: Thank you Corona love 🙂
[14:06] Bryce Galbraith: One question — are most graves to the west of the Nile? I think I remember something about that from a class I had once…
[14:06] Corona Anatine: I think they are yes
[14:06] Corona Anatine: as the land of the ancestors was seen as being to the west
[14:07] Corona Anatine: which may be an indication that they migrated from that area
[14:07] Rhiannon of the Birds: hi Vulcan!
[14:07] Bryce Galbraith: okay… and that’s where the sun sets too… not sure if that is significant or not, but seems like it would…
[14:07] Gilles Kuhn: too could you precise the time of the type of burials style you exposed i presume some of them were pre dynastic as well?
[14:07] Chraeloos: Hi Vulcan
[14:07] Corona Anatine: perhaps settling into the nile valley when the Sahara dried up and became infertile
[14:08] Bryce Galbraith: Corona, there was also a term you used — ossary practices — I’m not familiar with that. What was ossary practices?
[14:08] Corona Anatine: practices associated with bone other than burial
[14:09] Gilles Kuhn: its a form of art which was perfected by the mongols later…
[14:09] Corona Anatine: rearranging the bones in some other place
[14:09] Bryce Galbraith: ah, okay…
[14:10] Corona Anatine: superb avi btw gilles
[14:10] Corona Anatine: very appropriate
[14:10] Gilles Kuhn: i couldn’t resist indeed
[14:10] Bryce Galbraith: 🙂
[14:10] Corona Anatine: lol Anpu himself
[14:10] Gilles Kuhn: Anubis you mean?
[14:10] Chraeloos: lol Gilles, love it
[14:10] Corona Anatine: if you use the greek spelling yes
[14:11] Gilles Kuhn: i do
[14:11] Corona Anatine: anpu was the Kemic spelling
[14:11] Gilles Kuhn: i am not familiar with it
[14:11] Corona Anatine: it was likely pronounced ‘anubis’
[14:12] Corona Anatine: talking of which – one of my pet theories concerns pronunciation/spelling
[14:12] Gilles Kuhn: well the greek have weird pronunciation their sheep didn’t say baaaaah but viiiiiii …..
[14:12] Corona Anatine: concerning ‘Thoth’
[14:12] Corona Anatine: which in the kem is tehuti
[14:13] Corona Anatine: or djeheuti
[14:13] Chraeloos: interesting
[14:13] Corona Anatine: which is possibly pron -Dj-hu- fi-
[14:13] Corona Anatine: or maybe even Dj ho-fa
[14:14] Corona Anatine: lol just a thought i have
[14:14] Corona Anatine: tho curiously
[14:14] darcon Xue: 🙂
[14:14] Corona Anatine: one of the titles of Jehovah is ‘ judge of all the world’
[14:15] Corona Anatine: which was a title of thoth
[14:15] Corona Anatine: as it was thoth who recorded the judgement in the book of judgement
[14:15] Corona Anatine: but i digress
[14:16] Bryce Galbraith: 🙂
[14:16] Bryce Galbraith: well, thanks for the presentation… I should get going.
[14:17] Bryce Galbraith: Just a question — is 1pm going to be the new time? or back to noon next week?
[14:17] Corona Anatine: ok
[14:18] Bryce Galbraith: I suppose I can find out next week too 🙂
[14:18] Chraeloos: Noon next week
[14:18] Bryce Galbraith: ah, okay… thanks 🙂
[14:18] Chraeloos: sorry, am being bombarded with IMs
[14:18] Chraeloos: Yeah, it’ll be noon as regular as long as they happen, unless otherwise noticed.