the XVIIIth Dynasty; and a few important pieces of Graeco-Koman age
were found in the multitude of later graves. The most usual results from
these cemeteries are the strings of beads and stone vases. Some good groups
of the Vlth Dynasty were found, and the greater part were of the Xllth
Dynasty. The historical result from these tombs will be the dating of the
successive varieties of stone vases, of beads, and of pottery, which we shall
now be able to trace from the prehistoric times continuously to the
Eamessides. And such classification will again give the clue to fresh
discoveries, which can now be dated by these conclusions. We have
at last reached a point where something like a connected narrative of
Egyptian taste and fashion in the arts can be laid down, subject only to
small corrections in the future.
The main objects found of the historical ages are—a tomb cornice of the
Vlth Dynasty, carved to imitate roofing poles; the beads and jewellery of
the XHth Dynasty, in which are some fine pieces of work and rich strings
of amethyst, carnelian and glazed beads; a superb dagger with the name
of King Suaz-en-ra of the XlVth Dynasty (kept in Cairo); a complete
gilt cartonnage of about the XXXth Dynasty; an exquisite small marble
head of a Ptolemy (?) ; and the finest painted stucco head of Roman age
that is known.
Beside filling in the history already known, an entirely new chapter has
been opened by the discovery of an invasion by Libyans about the close of
the Xllth Dynasty. They inherited many of the ways of the prehistoric
people, from whom they were collateral descendants. Their pottery and
beads show what was then the level of skill in Libya; and their curious
custom of hanging up and decorating the skulls of oxen, goats, gazelles,
sheep, &c, seems connected with the bucrania of Greek architecture. We
also find that it was through these invaders that the elegantly-formed
pottery of the west (perhaps from Italy) was brought into Egypt as early
as 2000 b.c.
Altogether our view of the civilizations of Egypt has seldom been more
filled in and elaborated in any season's work than in this just past.
Although not many striking objects were found, yet we have established a
far firmer basis for studying what may yet be brought to light, and
especially for undertaking the great work of systematic record in the
cemeteries of Abydos, which now awaits our energies.
W. M. Flinders Peteie.