In cultures where demons and witches are perceived as real, fairy tales may merge into legends, where the narrative is perceived both by teller and hearers as being grounded in historical truth. Hip hop is a subculture that originated in African-American communities during the 1970s in New York City, specifically within the Bronx.
Peck - PAPYRUS OF NES MIN THE PAPYRUS OF NES-MIN: AN EGYPTIAN BOOK OF THE DEADDetroit Institute of Arts Acc. However, unlike legends and epics, they usually do not contain more than superficial references to religion and actual places, people, and events; they take place once upon a time rather than in actual times.
While the term is often used to refer to hip hop music, in its broader sense hip hop culture is characterized by the four elements of rapping, DJing, hip hop dance and graffiti.
One of the first priorities of the work was a complete examination of all previous exploration and excavation in the precinct, particularly that of Margaret Benson carried out in 1895-7. The stories may nonetheless be distinguished from other folk narratives such as legends (which generally involve belief in the veracity of the events described) and explicitly moral tales, including beast fables. The origins of the subculture stems from the block parties of DJ Kool Herc at 1520 Sedgwick Avenue, where Herc would mix samples of existing records with his own shouts to the crowd and dancers.
The history of the fairy tale is particularly difficult to trace because only the literary forms can survive. A thirty year old semi-invalid of a distinguished English family, she had the rare good luck to ask for the concession to a site that seemed unimportant and a site that no one else wanted.
DJ Afrika Bambaataa of the hip-hop collective Zulu Nation outlined the four pillars of hip hop culture: MCing, DJing, B-boying and graffiti writing. It was assumed that even an woman amateur with no experience could do little harm at the nearly destroyed Temple of Mut, in a remote location south of the Amun precinct at Karnak. Many of today's fairy tales have evolved from centuries-old stories that have appeared, with variations, in multiple cultures around the world.
Since its emergence in the South Bronx, hip hop culture has spread to both urban and suburban communities throughout the world.
She worked there for only three seasons from 1895 to 1897 and she published The Temple of Mut in Asher in 1899 2 with Janet Gourlay, who joined her in the second season. It doubtless would have been includedA in the tomb as a part of the group of documents mentioned. Hip hop music first emerged with Kool Herc and contemporary disc jockeys and imitators creating rhythmic beats by looping breaks (small portions of songs emphasizing a percussive pattern) on two turntables, more commonly referred to as sampling.
In the introduction to that publication of her work she emphasized that it was the first time any woman had been given permission by the Egyptian Department of Antiquities to excavate; she was well aware that it was something of an accomplishment.
These were not preserved "instead ofA the more usual Book of the Dead" but probably interred in addition to it.
An original form of dancing and particular styles of dress arose among fans of this new music.
The notion that a civilization developed and maintained a complex writtenA language based on a system of pictures holds a fascination that is undiminished today.
These elements experienced considerable refinement and development over the course of the history of the culture. We were frankly warned that we should make no discoveries; indeed if any had been anticipated, it was unlikely that the clearance would have been entrusted to inexperienced direction. AlthoughA there were numerous examples of carved hieroglyphic inscriptions in the collection, for manyA years the DIA lacked an important example of ancient writing on papyrus. 3 A Margaret Benson was born June 16, 1865, one of the six children of Edward White Benson.
A few fragmentaryA pieces of text of late date, in terms of the history of Egypt, were all the museum had to show forA this important medium for the transmission of art, commerce, and religion.
He was first an assistant master at Rugby, then the first headmaster of the newly founded Wellington College.He rose in the service of the church as Chancellor of the diocese of Lincoln, Bishop of Truro and, finally, Archbishop of Canterbury. It has amply been demonstrated in the literature on the history of EgyptianA art that linear abstraction and the necessary skill in draftsmanship were the underlying principlesA and the basis for all of the visual arts in Egyptian civilization.In 1972 Richard A.
Benson was a learned man with a wide knowledge of history and a serious concern for the education of the young.
He was also something of a poet and one of his hymns is still included in the American Episcopal Hymnal. Arthur Christopher, the eldest, was first a master at Eton and then at Magdalen College, Cambridge. A noted author and poet with an enormous literary output, he published over fifty books, most of an inspirational nature, but he was also the author of monographs on D. He helped to edit the correspondence of Queen Victoria for publication, contributed poetry to The Yellow Book, and wrote the words to the anthem "Land of Hope and Glory". The pieces were treated and mounted in the museum's conservation laboratory and placed on exhibition in fragmentary condition. Most important to the study of the excavator of the Mut Temple, he was the author of The Life and Letters of Maggie Benson, 4 a sympathetic biography which helps to shed some light on her short archaeological career.
The hope persisted that a better-preserved and typical ink drawing or painted section from a Book of the Dead might be found for the collection, but it wasA not until 1988 that this was realized in a manner as welcome as it was totally unexpected.
The object that was offered to the museum, the Book of the Dead of Nes-min, was a virtually complete example of a papyrus replete with carefully executed drawings of high artistic quality.To many people today, the Book of the Dead is considered the classic example of anA ancient Egyptian religious document.
It is a text that is easily accessible to the general publicA because it has been translated and published in a number of versions, the most popular probablyA being that of Sir E. He also wrote several reminiscences of his family in which he included his sister and described his involvement in her excavations.
He helped to supervise part of the work and he prepared the plan of the temple which was used in her eventual publication. His younger brother, Robert Hugh Benson, took Holy Orders in the Church of England, later converted to Roman Catholicism and was ordained a priest in that rite.
A far better modern comparison would be with the older formA of the Anglican Book of Common Prayer, which was also a compilation of texts and prayers andA contained spells to ward off evil influences.
He also achieved some fame as a novelist and poet and rose to the position of Papal Chamberlain. Surprisingly, nothing ofA the kind is preserved in the most famous of all the pyramids from earlier in Dynasty 4 (26tha€“25thA centuries).
During a period of decline after Dynasty 4, the kings of Egypt sought to insure theirA immortality through the addition of engraved prayers and spells to their tomb-pyramids.
Her publication of the excavation is cited in every reference to theTemple of Mut in the Egyptological literature, but she is known to history as a name in a footnote and little else.A Margaret Benson was born at Wellington College during her father's tenure as headmaster.
Each career advancement for him meant a move for the family so her childhood was spent in a series of official residences until she went to Oxford in 1883. She was eighteen when she was enrolled at Lady Margaret Hall, a women's college founded only four years before. The daily recitations to be made on behalf of the king's spirit in the temple associated withA his pyramid are also included.Later, during the Middle Kingdom, particularly Dynasties 9 to 11 (22nda€“21st centuries), many of the prayers and spells originally reserved for royalty were somewhat "democratized" and were allowed for the use of members of the nobility.
One of her tutors commented to his sister that he was sorry Margaret had not been able to read for "Greats" in the normal way. Rather than being carved on the walls of tombs, these texts were written or painted on the inside walls of box-shaped coffins for the deceased, giving these the appearance of small tomb chambers (fig.
5 When she took a first in the Women's Honours School of Philosophy, he said, "No one will realize how brilliantly she has done." 6 Since her work was not compared to that of her male contemporaries, it would have escaped noticed. In her studies she concentrated on political economy and moral sciences but she was also active in many aspects of the college. She participated in dramatics, debating and sports but her outstanding talent was for drawing and painting in watercolor.
65.394The original Pyramid Texts of the Old Kingdom were supplemented with other material, often including spells to ward off hunger and thirst as well as specific evils or dangers that the spirit might encounter.
These painted compilations of text and spells, for obvious reasons, have been named Coffin Texts. Her skill was so superior he thought she should be appointed drawing mistress if she remained at Lady Margaret Hall for any length of time. In their number and variety, the texts also add a great deal to our knowledge of the development of Egyptian religious thought, particularly concerning the rising importance of the god Osiris as the protector of the dead.Beginning during the New Kingdom, as a part of the development of religious beliefs, the new and expanded corpus of texts became available to a larger segment of the population, dependent, however, on what an individual was able to afford.
This last major phase in the development of funerary texts is the collection of prayers and spells popularly called the Book of the Dead (the proper title was something along the lines of the book of "going forth [from the tomb] by day"). She began a work titled "The Venture of Rational Faith" which occupied her thoughts for many years. It was traditionally written on papyrus, although selected passages are found on tomb walls and on some specific funerary objects, as will be discussed below. It was often augmented by a series of illustrations or vignettes mainly related to the various "chapters" (more properly, "spells"). There exist a number of forms or compilations, varying considerably in completeness, that make up the Book of the Dead.
From the titles alone they suggest a young woman who was deeply concerned with problems of society and the spirit and this preoccupation with the spiritual was to be one of her concerns throughout the rest of her life.
In some of her letters from Egypt it is clear that she was attempting to understand something of the spiritual life of the ancient Egyptians, not a surprising interest for the daughter of a churchman like Edward White Benson. A In 1885, at the age of twenty, Margaret was taken ill with scarlet fever while at Zermatt in Switzerland.
Some examples were produced in the expectation of purchase, with the name and titles of the deceased to be added in designated blank spaces.
In various forms, the Book of the Dead was in use in ancient Egypt for almost 1,500 years.It is a common misconception that the numbering system used in modern publications to designate the spells is ancient.
By the time she was twenty-five she had developed the symptoms of rheumatism and the beginnings of arthritis.
On the contrary, it was devised by Richard Lepsius, the pioneer German Egyptologist, in the early nineteenth century. The names assigned to the various spells are generally derived from the titles or labels used to designate them in the text. She made her first voyage to Egypt in 1894 because the warm climate was considered to be beneficial for those who suffered from her ailments. These were typically written in red pigment to set them off from the rest of the text, which was written in black ink, an example of the most ancient application of a visual differentiation that has come to be called "rubrics" (deriving from the Latin word for the color red) to designate headings in a religious text.The religious matter dealt with in the Book of the Dead is the result of a long evolutionary process and is extremely varied.
Wintering in Egypt was highly recommended at the time for a wide range of illnesses ranging from simple asthma to "mental strain." Lord Carnarvon, Howard Carter's sponsor in the search for the tomb of Tutankhamun, was one of the many who went to Egypt for reasons of health.
It includes hymns in praise of Re, the sun god, as well as other hymns or prayers addressed to Osiris, the ruler and judge of the spirits of the deceased. There are several sections that deal with the concept of the spirit acquiring the freedom and ability to leave the tomb "by day" or in "triumph over enemies" and in various magical forms or manifestations. After Cairo and Giza she went on by stages as far as Aswan and the island temples of Philae. They also guard against dangers, as exemplified by serpents and crocodiles.We know the Book of the Dead mainly from examples written on papyrus, the most familiar material, but two of the spells were regularly inscribed on specific funerary objects. She commented on the "wonderful calm" of the Great Sphinx, the physical beauty of the Nubians, the color of the stone at Philae, the descent of the cataract by boat, which she said was "not at all dangerous". One of these is spell 30b, which is found engraved on a special class of amulet called a heart scarab.
By the end of January she was established in Luxor with a program of visits to the monuments set out. This was traditionally made of green stone and intended to be wrapped on the mummy over the heart, which, unlike the other internal organs, was left in place in the body (fig. I don't feel as if I should have really had an idea of Egypt at all if I hadn't stayed here -- the Bas-reliefs of kings in chariots are only now beginning to look individual instead of made on a pattern, and the immensity of the whole thing is beginning to dawn -- and the colours, oh my goodness!
The ancient language and script she found fascinating but she was not as interested in reading classical Arabic. Her interest was maintained by the variety of animal and bird life for at home in England she had been surrounded by domestic animals and had always been keen on keeping pets.
73.81 The text of the heart scarab addresses the heart of the deceased and pleads that it not rise up and witness against the spirit and influence the weighing of the heart in the balance of judgment.
By the time her first stay ended in March, 1894, she had already resolved to return in the fall. The other frequently found text is spell 6, which is written, impressed, or inscribed on shawabtis, the mummy-form funerary figures intended to magically supply the spirit with workmen (fig. When Margaret returned to Egypt in November she had already conceived the idea of excavating a site and thus applied to the Egyptian authorities. Edouard Naville, the Swiss Egyptologist who was working at the Temple of Hatshepsut at Dier el Bahri for the Egypt Exploration Fund, wrote to Henri de Morgan, Director of the Department of Antiquities, on her behalf.
From her letters of the time, it is clear that this was one of the most exciting moments of Margaret Benson's life because she was allowed to embark on what she considered a great adventure. A Margaret's physical condition at the beginning of the excavation was of great concern to the family.
When it was acquired by the museum, it had been cut into twenty-four sections, generally separated at logical junctures that did not significantly harm the text or the drawings.
After acquisition by the museum, the papyrus was treated, some of the sections were reunited for the sake of visual clarity and continuity, and each of the parts was remounted and framed in a standard frame size.5Such rolls of papyrus have sometimes been found broken or otherwise spoiled by mishandling and unrolling without proper care. Only one vignette, a scene of four ibis-headed figures at four doors, appears to have been intentionally mutilated, as a complete figure has been removed. Otherwise, the condition of the document is generally good, although the top edge has suffered somewhat and has a ragged appearance.
A Margaret Benson had no particular training to qualify or prepare her for the job but what she lacked in experience she more than made up for with her "enthusiastic personality" and her intellectual curiosity. In the preface to The Temple of Mut in Asher she said that she had no intention of publishing the work because she had been warned that there was little to find.
Nes-min had the title of Prophet (priest) of Neferhotep, a somewhat obscure Egyptian deity who was the object of a cult in the region of Hu (known to the Greeks as Diospolis Parva) in Middle Egypt during the late period. He was also a priest of Amun-re at the Temple of Karnak at Thebes, and he counted among his other distinctions the rank of phyle leader, responsible for a contingent (or shift) of priests. Thus his social status would have been such that he could afford a Book of the Dead of good quality and considerable size. In the introduction to The Temple of Mut in Asher acknowledgments were made and gratitude was offered to a number of people who aided in the work in various ways. It is known from the "colophon" he added to the Bremner-Rhind papyrus (discussed below) in the British Museum, London, that he had more than twenty priestly and other official titles to his credit. The professional Egyptologists and archaeologists included Naville, Petrie, de Morgan, Brugsch, Borchardt, Daressy, Hogarth and especially Percy Newberry who translated the inscriptions on all of the statues found.
These include priesthoods in the service of the gods Amun, Khonsu, Min, Osiris, Isis, Nephtys, Horus, and Hathor, in addition to that of Neferhotep.


We know little about the man Nes-min beyond the names of his parents, the titles he held, and the choice of religious texts he took with him to his tomb, but there is one additional and important bit of evidence about him provided by one of those documents.It was not the usual Egyptian custom to include the year, month, or day in a religious text such as the Book of the Dead, in contrast to personal letters or state, legal, and commercial documents, where a recorded date might have been important.
Lea), 10 a Colonel Esdaile, 11 and Margaret's brother, Fred, helped in the supervision of the work in one or more seasons.
The determination of a period or date for the execution of an example of a religious text is usually based on the linguistic, calligraphic, or artistic style. A It is usually assumed that Margaret Benson and Janet Gourlay worked only as amateurs, with little direction and totally inexperienced help. It is generally only when an individual is not only named but also can be identified with some certainty by titles and family relationships or some genealogical notation that a more exact date can be established for a particular document. It is clear from the publication that Naville helped to set up the excavation and helped to plan the work.
Nes-mina€™s Book of the Dead, however, can be said to be as precisely dated as almost any funerary papyrus in existence. Hogarth 12 gave advice in the direction of the digging and Newberry was singled out for his advice, suggestions and correction as well as "unwearied kindness." Margaret's brother, Fred, helped his inexperienced sister by supervising some of the work as well as making a measured plan of the temple which is reproduced in the publication. This individual is well known in the Egyptological literature because other papyri belonging to him have been identified and well published in the past.6 In the Detroit papyrus, Nes-mina€™s father and mother are mentioned by name7 as are some of his somewhat unusual titles, so that we can identify him with great certainty as the owner of two other papyri in the British Museum (BM10208 and BM10209), which give him some of the same titles and the same genealogy. Furthermore, he was the author of the so-called colophon of the Bremner-Rhind papyrus (BM10188).
These are the documents, consisting mainly of prayers, mentioned in the quotation at the beginning of this article. Benson) was qualified to help because he had intended to pursue archaeology as a career, studied Classical Languages and archaeology at Cambridge, and was awarded a scholarship at King's College on the basis of his work.
The identification of Nes-min with this last papyrus is particularly important because it is dated to year 12 in the reign of Alexander IV, the posthumous son of Alexander the Great, or 306a€“305 B.C.
He organized a small excavation at Chester to search for Roman legionary tomb stones built into the town wall and the results of his efforts were noticed favorably by Theodore Mommsen, the great nineteenth century classicist, and by Mr. The logical conclusion is simply that if Nes-min was a mature man alive in 306a€“305, his Book of the Dead was certainly made during the first half of the third century B.C. According to Mosher, the contents of the Detroit papyrus of Nes-min are somewhat typical for a Book of the Dead made late in Egyptian history, at the very beginning of the Ptolemaic Period.
Benson went on to excavate at Megalopolis in Greece for the British School at Athens and published the result of his work in the Journal of Hellenic Studies.
He has pointed out that this papyrus contains 148 of the 165 spells that had come to be standard in the Late Period codification of the corpus. His first love was Greece and its antiquities and it is probable that concern for his sister's health was a more important reason for him joining the excavation than an interest in the antiquities of Egypt. He also observed that some of the texts are abbreviated, but that this is not to be considered a fault, because even some indication of a particular spell was deemed to be more effective than omitting it completely.The text of the document is written in hieratic script, a cursive form of Egyptian hieroglyphic writing, although some of the larger vignettes have texts written in a more formal hieroglyphic hand. 13A It is interesting to speculate as to why a Victorian woman was drawn to the Temple of Mut. In the shape and simplification of individual signs, the cursive script shows the influence and limitations of the reed pen employed to produce it, but it was faster and easier to write and well adapted to a papyrus surface. The precinct of the goddess who was the consort of Amun, titled "Lady of Heaven", and "Mistress of all the Gods", is a compelling site and was certainly in need of further exploration in Margaret's time. The relationship of hieratic to the formal hieroglyphic style of writing is roughly comparable to that of modern cursive writing to block printing or printed type. Its isolation and the arrangement with the Temple of Mut enclosed on three sides by its own sacred lake made it seem even more romantic. 14 When she began the excavation three days was considered enough time to "do" the monuments of Luxor and Margaret said that few people could be expected to spend even a half hour at in the Precinct of Mut. He was a master draftsman with a command of Egyptian standard requirements and proportion and was immensely skilled in the handling of pen and ink, as is shown by the fine and consistent quality of line throughout the whole document. A On her first visit to Egypt in 1894 she had gone to see the temple because she had heard about the granite statues with cats' heads (the lion-headed images of Sakhmet).
The figures have been slightly abbreviated in a stylized manner for which parallels can be found in other papyri of the same time.The Book of the Dead of Nes-min is a rich collection of vignettes meant to accompany the various spells of the text.
The donkey-boys knew how to find the temple but it was not considered a "usual excursion" and after her early visits to the site she said that "The temple itself was much destroyed, and the broken walls so far buried, that one could not trace the plan of more than the outer court and a few small chambers". They range in size and complexity from large, multifigured examples to the smallest drawings accompanying short spells.
15 The Precinct of the Goddess Mut is an extensive field of ruins about twenty-two acres in size, of which Margaret had chosen to excavate only the central structure. A number of them are exquisite little masterpieces in their own right and show the ability of the artist to capture the look and spirit of human and animal life within the strictures of the rules of Egyptian art. Connected to the southernmost pylons of the larger Amun Temple of Karnak by an avenue of sphinxes, the Mut precinct contains three major temples and a number of smaller structures in various stages of dilapidation.
Among these, the drawings of birds should be particularly noted; the standard method of representing the various birds is adhered to but the individuality of types is recognized (see fig. She noted some of these details in her initial description of the site, but in three short seasons she was only able to work inside the Mut Temple proper and she cleared little of its exterior.
5).A The tiny drawings at the top edge of the papyrus, which act almost as a continuous frieze, contain many examples of meticulously detailed renderings. These include the ubiquitous images of the deceased, priests and officiants, the gods, and numerous offerings for the good of the spirit of Nes-min.Of all of the vignettes included in any version of the Book of the Dead, probably the most familiar and most often reproduced is the Weighing of the Heart scene representing the individual judgment of the deceased (fig. Serious study of the temple complex was started at least as early as the expedition of Napoleon at the end of the eighteenth century when artists and engineers attached to the military corps measured the ruins and made drawings of some of the statues.
6).A Typically, as in the Detroit papyrus, the deceased is led into the Hall of Judgment by the god Thoth, the patron deity of scribes and writing, who is represented as ibis-headed. During the first quarter of the nineteenth century, the great age of the treasure hunters in Egypt, Giovanni Belzoni carried away many of the lion-headed statues and pieces of sculpture to European museums.
Nes-min is shown on the far right, accompanied by the goddess Ma'at, the female personification of truth and order, who is identified by the ostrich feather hieroglyph on her head.
Champollion, the decipherer of hieroglyphs, and Karl Lepsius, the pioneer German Egyptologist, both visited the precinct, copied inscriptions and made maps of the remains.16 August Mariette had excavated there and believed that he had exhausted the site. It is significant that Nes-min not only holds the same feather (twice) in attestation to his adherence to the notion of truthfulness but also wears an amulet of the goddess on a cord around his neck.
Most of the travelers and scholars who had visited the precinct or carried out work there left some notes or sketches of what they saw and these were useful as references for the new excavation. Before him he is able to witness the weighing of his heart in the scale against the feather of Ma'at. Since some of the early sources on the site are quoted in her publication, Margaret was obviously aware of their existence.
Jackal- and falcon-headed deities assist in the process of weighing, while a baboon, an animal sacred to Thoth, perches at the top of the scale.
17A On her return to Egypt at the end of November, 1894, she stopped at Mena House hotel at Giza and for a short time at Helwan, south of Cairo.
Ammit, the devouring monster, waits atop a shrine-shaped pedestal to consume the heart if it is found wanting in the balance. Helwan was known for its sulphur springs and from about 1880 it had become a popular health resort, particularly suited for the treatment of the sorts of maladies from which Margaret suffered.
He is accompanied by images of the "Four Sons of Horus," who emerge from a lotus blossom, symbolic of rebirth. People at every turn asked if she remembered them and her donkey-boy almost wept to see her. The whole action takes place under the attention of forty-onea€”or forty-two, the standard number, when Osiris is counteda€”assessors of the dead, each holding, again, the ostrich feather of Ma'at.
A "On January 1st, 1895, we began the excavation" -- with a crew composed of four men, sixteen boys (to carry away the earth), an overseer, a night guardian and a water carrier. The largest the work gang would be in the three seasons of excavation was sixteen or seventeen men and eighty boys, still a sizable number. The list of transgressions is so detailed and so revealing that it has been compared to the morality espoused in the commandments of the Judeo-Christian tradition or the moral strictures of other religions. Before the work started Naville came to "interview our overseer and show us how to determine the course of the work".
In essence, it gives the modern reader a clear idea of what would have been considered a moral and correct way of life in ancient Egypt.
A A good part of Margaret's time was occupied with learning how to supervise the workmen and the basket boys.
Since her spoken Arabic was almost nonexistent, she had to use a donkey-boy as a translator.
The rubric preceding this lengthy passage tells us that it is to be uttered upon the spirit's arrival at the hall of justice, at the time of the weighing of the heart or the individual judgment.The drawing style in the Book of the Dead of Nes-min is well exemplified by the execution of this vignette of the Weighing of the Heart. It would have been helpful if she had had the opportunity to work on an excavation conducted by a professional and profit from the experience but she was eager to learn and had generally good advice at her disposal so she proceeded in an orderly manner and began to clear the temple. The individual figures appear to be tall and graceful and exhibit an inner coherence of form that tended to gradually weaken during the following Ptolemaic Period, although the treatment of some anatomical parts here prefigures the later style, particularly in some apparently awkward combinations.
On the second of January she wrote to her mother: "I don't think much will be found of little things, only walls, bases of pillars, and possibly Cat-statues. The linear delineation of figures and parts of figures is done with great care, subtlety, and accuracy and in considerable minute detail. One rather curious peculiarity of the drawing style is the use of an "overlap" in which lines cross or intersect in a manner that almost suggests inadequate prior planning and the consequent necessity for overdrawing. I shall feel rather like --'Massa in the shade would lay While we poor niggers toiled all day' -- for I am to have a responsible overseer, and my chief duty apparently will be paying. This can be seen particularly in the arms of the figure of Nes-min as they cross his torso and in the detail of the column capitals of the architecture framing the scene of judgment. The overall design and arrangement were carefully thought out; the composition is well balanced, with adequate space allotted to each of the participants in the drama.
18A She is described as riding out from the Luxor Hotel on donkey-back with bags of piaster pieces jingling for the Saturday payday. This distinguishes it from other examples of the Book of the Dead where text and figures vie for space in a crowded format.In most Books of the Dead of the Late Period, there are only a select number of vignettes done on a large scale. She had been warned to pay each man and boy personally rather than through the overseer to reduce the chances of wages disappearing into the hands of intermediaries. These include the Weighing of the Heart scene discussed above and a few other formulaic images.
The workmen believed that she was at least a princess and they wanted to know if her father lived in the same village as the Queen of England.
A further example of such emphasis in the Detroit papyrus is the composite scene in which Nes-min is depicted carrying out a variety of agricultural activities in the two center registers (fig. When they sang their impromptu work songs (as Egyptian workmen still do) they called Margaret the "Princess" and her brother Fred the "Khedive".
7).A On the right he cuts grain with a curved sickle and on the left drives cattle, which will tread on and thresh it. A PART II: THE EXCAVATIONSA The clearance was begun in the northern, outer, court of the temple where Mariette had certainly worked. Earth was banked to the north side of the court, against the back of the ruined first pylon but on the south it had been dug out even below the level of the pavement. In the next lower register an earlier part of the cycle is depicted in which Nes-min plows the field and sows the grain. Mariette's map is inaccurate in a number of respects suggesting that he was not able to expose enough of the main walls.
The accompanying text reads (in paraphrase), "I plow and I reap in the field of offerings and I am content with the gods." This is a part of the illustration for spell 110, an elaborate homage to the gods that seeks to guarantee the continued good of the spirit of the deceased. At the first (northern) gate it was necessary for Margaret Benson to clear ten or twelve feet of earth to reach the paving stones at the bottom. The stylized representation of farm activities was standard for this spell in the Book of the Dead and had no direct reference to the occupation of the deceased; nor were these images included to suggest that it would be his fate to labor as a common field hand in the next world. In the process they found what were described as fallen roofing blocks, a lion-headed statue lying across and blocking the way, and also a small sandstone head of a hippopotamus.
The agricultural cycle of plowing, sowing, reaping, and threshing was seemingly employed as a graphic image of the progression of the seasons, the cycle of beginning and completion, and the continuation of life in which the deceased aspired to participate for eternity.The variety as well as the quality of illustrations in this Book of the Dead is further exemplified by a vignette with two distinct parts (fig. In the clearance of the court the bases of four pairs of columns were found, not five as on Mariette's map. After working around the west half of the first court and disengaging eight Sakhmet statues in the process, they came on their first important find. The falcon-headed figure is Sokar-Osiris, a conflation of the qualities of Osiris and Sokar, a falcon-headed god of the necropolis.
Near the west wall of the court, was discovered a block statue of a man named Amenemhet, a royal scribe of the time of Amenhotep II. The goddess next to him is the personification of the West (Imnt), the land of the blessed.
The statue is now in the Egyptian Museum in Cairo 19 but Margaret was given a cast of it to take home to England. Sokar-Osiris is depicted with the typical mummy form and crown associated with images of Osiris.
When it was discovered she wrote to her father: A My Dearest Papa, We have had such a splendid find at the Temple of Mut that I must write to tell you about it. We were just going out there on Monday, when we met one of our boys who works there running to tell us that they had found a statue. One of the interesting aspects of the grouping of these three figures is the result of a standard mode of representation found in all two-dimensional art of ancient Egypt.
When we got there they were washing it, and it proved to be a black granite figure about two feet high, knees up to its chin, hands crossed on them, one hand holding a lotus. Although the goddess is shown as if she were standing behind the god, she is actually meant to be seen as standing on his right side and thus accompanying him in a position of equality.The left-hand section of this vignette contains three separate elements that generally appear together and accompany spell 148. 20A The government had appointed an overseer who spent his time watching the excavation for just such finds.
These are: the Seven Celestial Cows with the Bull of Heaven, the Four Rudders, and the Four Sons of Horus. He reported it to a sub-inspector who immediately took the block statue away to a store house and locked it up.
Through each of these somewhat disparate agencies, an appeal for the protection of the spirit is made or implied.
He said it was hard that Margaret should not have "la jouissance de la statue que vous avez trouve" and she was allowed to take it to the hotel where she could enjoy it until the end of the season when it would become the property of the museum.
All of these elements are enclosed in an architectural framework resembling a shrine.Although this Book of the Dead was generally executed with care and skill, the artist has inconsistently treated the two ends of this shrine-like structure.


The statue had been found on the pavement level, apparently in situ, suggesting to the excavator that this was good evidence for an earlier dating for the temple than was generally believed at the time.
The presence of a statue on the floor of a temple does not necessarily date the temple, but many contemporary Egyptologists might have come to the same conclusion. The right side may be unfinished, but it actually looks as if there was a change of design or a lapse of memory from one end of the enclosure to the other, so that the two ends do not match and possibly belong to different types of architectural structures.
One visitor to the site recalled that a party of American tourists were perplexed when Margaret was pointed out to them as the director of the dig.
This was a relatively small mistake, hardly noticeable and hardly affecting the appearance of the composition, but it does underscore the notion that such texts were executed by fallible individuals.
At that moment she and a friend were sitting on the ground quarreling about who could build the best sand castle. Seemingly the product of a careful and meticulous craftsman, the Detroit papyrus is remarkably free of infelicities of design.
This was probably not the picture of an "important" English Egyptologist that the Americans had expected.
As such, it can take its place with other important examples of the genre representing one of the last phases in a long tradition of religious literature that has been preserved from ancient Egypt.When the Detroit papyrus was acquired for the collection of the museum from the New York art market, it had virtually no provenance provided for it other than that it had been known by some Egyptologists to have been in Europe for a number of years. A As work was continued in the first court other broken statues of Sakhmet were found as well as two seated sandstone baboons of the time of Ramesses III. In an effort to determine its recent history, a series of inquiries was made among scholars who have made a particular study of Egyptian papyri of the Late and Ptolemaic Periods, and no satisfactory information was obtained beyond a vague memory on the part of some who recalled it as being in an old German or French collection. 21 The baboons went to the museum in Cairo, a fragment of a limestone stela was eventually consigned to a store house in Luxor and the upper part of a female figure was left in the precinct where it was recently rediscovered. The connection provided by the "colophon" of the Bremner-Rhind papyrus may provide a suggestion of its possible modern history, if not solid evidence as to its source.R. The small objects found in the season of 1895 included a few coins, a terra cotta of a reclining "princess", some beads, Roman pots and broken bits of bronze. Time was spent repositioning Sakhmet statues which appeared to be out of place based on what was perceived as a pattern for their arrangement.
Faulkner takes issue with the designation "colophon" for the notation presumably written by Nes-min on the Bremner-Rhind papyrus, since it does not actually date the production of the manuscript or identify the person who wrote it, as a colophon, by definition, is intended to. Even if they were correct they could not be sure that they were reconstructing the original ancient placement of the statues in the temple or some modification of the original design. 10 The date given is the year in which this additional note was made in a handwriting completely different from the original text. In the spirit of neatness and attempting to leave the precinct in good order, they also repaired some of the statues with the aid of an Italian plasterer, hired especially for that purpose. A Margaret was often bed ridden by her illnesses and she was subject to fits of depression as well but she and her brother Fred would while away the evenings playing impromptu parlor games. The long list of sacerdotal titles associated with Nes-min and the names of his father and mother in the "colophon" are of utmost importance for the identification of the precise owner of the Detroit papyrus. For a fancy dress ball at the Luxor Hotel she appeared costumed as the goddess Mut, wearing a vulture headdress which Naville praised for its ingenuity.
It is this genealogical evidence, as noted above, by which the Detroit Book of the Dead can be securely connected with the Bremner-Rhind papyrus.11The Bremner-Rhind papyrus is identified by the names of former owners, as is customary in museum nomenclature.
The resources in the souk of Luxor for fancy dress were nonexistent but Margaret was resourceful enough to find material with which to fabricate a costume based, as she said, on "Old Egyptian pictures." A The results of the first season would have been gratifying for any excavator.
Alexander Henry Rhind was a Scottish lawyer who traveled to Egypt for his health in 1855a€“56 and 1856a€“57.12 As did many other educated Europeans who went there for medical reasons, he undertook excavations in the Theban area (modern Luxor). In a short five weeks the "English Lady" had begun to clear the temple and to note the errors on the older plans available to her.
Through excavation or purchase he acquired a large collection of antiquities, which he eventually bequeathed to the National Museum of Antiquities, now the Royal Scottish Museum, in Edinburgh.13 Rhind was very much ahead of his time in that he recognized the importance of recording the context and the finding locations of the objects he excavated. She had started a program of reconstruction with the idea of preserving some of the statues of Sakhmet littering the site. She had found one statue of great importance and the torso of another which did not seem so significant to her.
After Rhinda€™s death, Bremner sold the papyrus that jointly bears their names, with others, to the British Museum.
Her original intention of digging in a picturesque place where she had been told there was nothing much to be found was beginning to produce unexpected results.A The Benson party arrived in Egypt for the second season early in January of 1896. 15 Why these objects did not go with the rest of Rhinda€™s collection to Edinburgh is not clear, but the fact that an important papyrus such as the Bremner-Rhind was not included in the bequest suggests that there may have been otherwise unrecognized material in the Rhind collection that was excluded as well. After a trip down to, they reached Luxor Aswan around the twenty-sixth and the work began on the thirtieth. It is thus probable, but impossible to prove, that the Detroit papyrus was a part of the Rhind collection and may have been directed elsewhere, possibly to a private collector. That day Margaret was introduced to Janet Gourlay who had come to assist with the excavation. If this is true, it has remained unidentified as such, as the papyrus for the most part has gone unpublished for more than a hundred years. The beginning of the long relationship between "Maggie" Benson and "Nettie" Gourlay was not signaled with any particular importance. It should be noted, however, that Faulkner said, Nothing definite is known of the provenance of the [Bremner-Rhind] manuscript, but the presumed last owner, the priest Nesmin who wrote the "Colophon," appears to have been a Theban, judging by the priestly titles he bore. Although there is no direct evidence bearing on the point, it seems probable that the papyrus came from his tomb, and it would be interesting to know in what circumstances a book which appears to have been written originally for a temple library came into the private possession of a member of the priesthood.16It would be as interesting to know where Rhind acquired the Bremner-Rhind papyrus and the other papyri related to Nes-min, since it is possible that the Detroit papyrus may have come from the same source. By May of the same year she was to write (also to her mother): "I like her more and more -- I haven't liked anyone so well in years". In 1964, in pursuit of material for her study of the two other papyri from the Rhind collection, F. Miss Benson and Miss Gourlay seemed to work together very well and to share similar reactions and feelings. They were to remain close friends for much of Margaret's life, visiting and travelling together often. Their correspondence reflects a deep mutual sympathy and Janet was apparently much on Margaret's mind because she often mentioned her friend in writing to others.
In contrast to these monuments, it is to the papyri of ancient Egypt, as to the clay tablets of Mesopotamia, that we must turn to witness the earliest stages of the recording of human thought and memory in a portable form. After her relationship with Margaret Benson she faded into obscurity and even her family has been difficult to trace, although a sister was located a few years ago. A For the second season in 1896 the work staff was a little larger, with eight to twelve men, twenty-four to thirty-six boys, a rais (overseer), guardians and the necessary water carrier.
With the first court considered cleared in the previous season, work was begun at the gate way between the first and second courts. An investigation was made of the ruined wall between these two courts and the conclusion was drawn that it was "a composite structure" suggesting that part of the wall was of a later date than the rest. The wall east of the gate opening is of stone and clearly of at least two building periods while the west side has a mud brick core faced on the south with stone. Margaret thought the west half of the wall to be completely destroyed because it was of mud brick which had never been replaced by stone. She found the remains of "more than one row of hollow pots" which she thought had been used as "air bricks" in some later rebuilding. Alessandro Roccati has used the material from the tomb of Nes-min as an example of care and concern for important texts to the point that they were included among the furnishings for the spirit of the deceased. Originally built of mud brick, like many of the structures in the Precinct of Mut, the south face of both halves of the wall was sheathed with stone one course thick no later than the Ramesside Period.
During the Ptolemaic Period the core of the east half of the mud brick wall was replaced with stone but the Ramesside sheathing was retained. Here the untrained excavator was beginning to understand some of the problems of clearing a temple structure in Egypt. Mariette's plan of the second chamber probably seemed accurate after a superficial examination so a complete clearing seemed unnecessary. Other fragments were found and the original height of the seated statue was estimated between fourteen and sixteen feet high. The following year de Morgan, the Director General of the Department of Antiquities, ordered the head sent to the museum in Cairo The finding of the large lion head is mentioned in a letter from Margaret to her mother dated February 9, 1896, 22. In the same letter she also mentions the discovery of a statue of Ramesses II on the day before the letter was written. Limme, "Un 'Prince Ramesside' FantA?me," in Aegyptus Museis Rediviva: Miscellanea in Honorem Hermanni de Meulenaere (Brussels, 1993), 114 n.
23.Her published letters often give exact or close dates of discoveries whereas her later publication in the Temple of Mut in Asher was an attempt at a narrative of the work in some order of progression through the temple and dates are often lacking.
About the same time that the giant lion head was found some effort was made to raise a large cornerstone block but a crowbar was bent and a rope was broken. The end result of the activity is not explained at that point and the location of the corner not given but it can probably be identified with the southeast cornerstone of the Mut Temple mentioned later in a description of the search for foundation deposits. A Somewhere near the central axis of the second court, but just inside the gateway, they came on the upper half of a royal statue with nemes headdress and the remains of a false beard. There had been inscriptions on the shoulder and back pillar but these had been methodically erased. Budge, The Book of the Dead (The Papyrus of Ani), 1890, 1894, 1913 (with various additions and emendations).4For more up-to-date background material and translations of the Book of the Dead, see R. The lower half was found a little later and it was possible to reconstruct an over life-sized, nearly complete, seated statue of a king. The excavators published it as "possibly" Tutankhamun, an identification not accepted today, and it is still to be seen, sitting to the east of the gateway, facing into the second court.24 A large statue of Sakhmet was also found, not as large as the colossal head, but larger than the other figures still in the precinct and in most Egyptian collections. It was also reconstructed and left in place, on the west side of the doorway where it is one of the most recognizable landmarks in the temple. In the clearance of the second court a feature described as a thin wall built out from the north wall was found in the northeast corner.
It was later interpreted by the nineteenth century excavators as part of the arrangement for a raised cloister and it was not until recent excavation that it was identified as the lower part of the wall of a small chapel, built against the north wall of the court. The process of determining any sequence of the levels in the second court was complicated by the fact that it had been worked over by earlier treasure hunters and archaeologists.
In some cases statues were found below the original floor level, leading to the assumption that some pieces had fallen, broken the pavement, and sunk into the floor of their own weight. It is more probable that the stone floors had been dug out and undermined in the search for antiquities. A An attempt was made to put the area in order for future visitors as the excavation progressed. This included the reconstruction of some of the statues as found and the moving of others in a general attempt to neaten the appearance of the temple. Other finds made in the second court included inscribed blocks too large to move or reused in parts of walls still standing. The statue identified as Ramesses II, mentioned in Margaret's letter of February 9, was found on the southwest side of the court, near the center.
It was a seated figure in pink granite, rather large in size, but when it was completely uncovered it was found to be broken through the middle with the lower half in an advanced state of disintegration.
Haikal, Two Hieratic Funerary Papyri of Nesmin, Bibliotheca Aegyptiaca 14 (Brussels, 1970).W. The upper part was in relatively good condition except for the left shoulder and arm and it was eventually awarded to the excavators. A Mention was also made of several small finds from the second court including a head of a god in black stone and part of the vulture headdress from a statue of a goddess or a queen. The recent ongoing excavations carried out by the Brooklyn Museum have revealed a female head with traces of a vulture headdress as well as a number of fragments of legs and feet which suggest that the head of the god found by Margaret Benson was from a pair statue representing Amun and Mut. Another important discovery she made on the south side of the court was a series of sandstone relief blocks representing the arrival at Thebes of Nitocris, daughter of Psamtik I, as God's Wife of Amun.25A At some time during the season Margaret was made aware of the possibility that foundation deposits might still be in place. These dedicatory deposits were put down at the time of the founding of a structure or at a time of a major rebuilding, and they are often found under the cornerstones, the thresholds or under major walls, usually in the center. They contain a number of small objects including containers for food offerings, model tools and model bricks or plaques inscribed with the name of the ruler. Herman De Meulenare, Seminarie voor Egyptologie, Rijksuniversiteit-Gent; it was verified by Malcolm Mosher. The importance of finding such a deposit in the Temple of Mut was obvious to Margaret because it would prove to everyone's satisfaction who had built the temple, or at least who had made additions to it. I offer my thanks to all of these scholars, but particularly to Carol Andrews, who was the first to point out the connection to me.12W.
A They first looked for foundation deposits in the middle of the gateway between the first and second courts. At the same time another part of the crew was clearing the innermost rooms in the south part of the temple. Under the central of the three chambers they discovered a subterranean crypt with an entrance so small that it had to be excavated by "a small boy with a trowel".
Uphill, Who Was Who in Egyptology (London, 1972), 247a€“4813Two instances of gifts of large collection of antiquities from Rhind are listed in the Proceedings of the Society of Antiquaries, but there is no indication about material going elsewhere.
This chamber has been re-cleared in recent years and proved to be a small rectangular room with traces of an erased one-line text around the four walls. Letter to author from the Department of History and Applied Art, National Museums of Scotland, Edinburgh, May 26, 1999 (DIA curatorial files).14Brian M. In antiquity the access seems to have been hidden by a paving stone which had to be lifted each time the room was entered. A The search for foundation deposits continued in the southeast corner of the temple (probably the place where the crowbar was bent and the rope broken). Again no deposit was found but in digging around the cornerstone, below the original ground level, they began to find statues and fragments of statues.
As the earth continued to yield more and more pieces of sculpture, Legrain arrived from the Amun Temple, where he was supervising the excavation, and announced his intention to take everything away to the storehouse.
BENSON IN EGYPT EGYPT IN TIN PAN ALLEY IMAGES OF CLEOPATRA IN FILM LESSONS FROM HISTORY MARGARET BENSON PAPYRUS OF NES MIN THE RAPE OF LUXOR SONNINI PAPYRUS OF NES MIN THE PAPYRUS OF NES-MIN: AN EGYPTIAN BOOK OF THE DEADDetroit Institute of Arts Acc. Aside from the pleasure of the find, it was important to have the objects at hand for study, comparison and the copying of inscriptions.
The pieces were treated and mounted in the museum's conservation laboratory and placed on exhibition in fragmentary condition.



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