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Ancient Egyptian Tombs: The Culture of Life and Death

ISBN: 978-1-4051-2089-0
306 pages
February 2011, Wiley-Blackwell
Ancient Egyptian Tombs: The Culture of Life and Death (1405120894) cover image


This book explores the development of tombs as a cultural phenomenon in ancient Egypt and examines what tombs reveal about ancient Egyptian culture and Egyptians’ belief in the afterlife.
  • Investigates the roles of tombs in the development of funerary practices
  • Draws on a range of data, including architecture, artifacts and texts
  • Discusses tombs within the context of everyday life in Ancient Egypt
  • Stresses the importance of the tomb as an eternal expression of the self
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Table of Contents

List of Illustrations.



1. Nameless Lives at Tarkhan and Saqqara Early Tombs and the Ka.

2. Pits, Palaces and Pyramids: Royal Cemeteries of the Early Dynastic Period and Old Kingdom.

3. Non-Royal Cemeteries of Dynasty 4.

4. Unas, Teti and their Courts: the Late Old Kingdom at Saqqara.

5. The Tombs of Qar and Idu: Families and Funerals in the Late Old Kingdom.

6. A Growing Independence: Court and Regional Cemeteries in the Late Old Kingdom.

7. Ankhtify: A Time of Change.

8. Osiris, Lord of Abydos.

9. ‘Lords of Life’: Coffins.

10. Strangers and Brothers: The Middle Kingdom in Middle Egypt.

11. North and South: Middle Kingdom Tombs at the Royal Residence.

12. Ineni, Senenmut and User-Amun: New Tombs for Old.

13. Rekhmire and the Tomb of the Well-Known Soldier: Foreigners and Funerals in the Age of Empire.

14. Huya and Horemheb: Amarna and After.

15. Samut and the Ramesside Private Tomb.

16. Sennedjem: Building and Buying at Deir el-Medina.

17. Petosiris: A Dying Tradition.


Further Reading.


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Author Information

Steven Snape is Senior Lecturer in Egyptian Archaeology at the University of Liverpool, Director of Archaeological Collections in Liverpool University’s Garstang Museum of Archaeology, and Director of its excavations at the Ramesside fortress-town of Zawiyet Umm el-Rakham. His books include Six Archaeological Sites in Sharqiyeh Province (1986), A Temple of Domitian at El-Ashmunein (1990), Egyptian Temples (1996), and Zawiyet Umm el-Rakham I: The Temple and Chapels (with P. Wilson, 2007).
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"This work is a rather ambitious attempt to summarize not only the development of the burial place in ancient Egypt and its architecture, but also the complex religious significance of the tomb, the attendant rituals and ritual objects as well as funerary texts. Admittedly, there is a great deal to be said about each of these aspects of the burial rite in ancient Egypt and the author has essayed a survey that includes a good deal of significant information as well as observation." (Bryn Mawr Classical Review, 12 November 2011)


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