Birch, Samuel   [Hrsg.]
Catalogue of the collection of Egyptian antiquities at Alnwick Castle — London, 1880

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PREFACE.

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papyri, and occasionally and at a later period inscribed on the
outer bandages with which the mummy was enwrapped. Specimens
of these bandages are amongst the objects of the collection.

Another important division is that of civil life, and comprises
objects representing the statues, dress, habiliments, implements, and
other objects connected with the history, manners and customs,
and general civilization of the Egyptians. Statues of large size
are rarely found in collections, on account of the difficulty of
transporting them, but some of considerable dimensions are among
the objects of this division. A few are of great beauty and one
is a remarkable figure probably from the serdab, or chamber, of a
mastaba, or tomb, of the early period of the third dynasty; it is in
a remarkably fine state of preservation, and an excellent example of
the sculpture and mode of colouring of the remote period. Other
statues of a much later date are in the collection and amply illus-
trate the different developements of art in its successive phases.
It is from the monuments of civil life that the political organization
of the country can be traced, although great light is thrown upon
that part of the history of Egypt by the names and titles of persons
found on tablets, sepulchral figures, and other objects. The Egyp-
tian habit of inscribing different objects in daily use or consigned
for sepulchral purposes, results in preserving to our notice a large
list of the different functionaries, their relation to one another
and genealogy, and the offices held by them whether sacerdotal
or civil, and adds an important element to the elucidation of
the political system of Egypt, In the Alnwick collection will be
found several objects of civil life, vases for the toilet and other
purposes, boxes formerly in daily use, baskets, pallets or writing
stands, sandals, and other ornaments of dress, or attire, such as
rings, scarabsei, necklaces, bracelets and various beads and engraved
stones, which from their easily portable nature compose a large
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