Egypt Exploration Fund [Hrsg.]
Archaeological report: comprising the work of the Egypt Exploration Fund and the progress of egyptology during the year ... — 1898-1899

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While the monopoly of digging in Egypt has been shared between France
and native or half native dealers, scientific excavation there has hitherto
been attempted only by Englishmen born and bred. Petrie has had no rival
from other countries, and the land that produced Champollion, de Kouge,
and Maspero—each in his time and manner a leader in the world of
Egyptology—has sent to Egypt no one equipped and prepared for the respon-
sibility of exposing the secrets of its sands. The duties of a director of the
department of antiquities have been too multifarious and difficult to include
the right conduct of excavations : endless digging inadequately supervised
has been directed solely to the enrichment of museums, to the uncovering
of inscriptions, or to providing matter for brilliant and rapid generalizations.
In the last case it is as though some precious but enigmatic document
were destroyed by its discoverer at his first essay in interpreting it. His
attempt may probably have aroused new interest, it may even have left a
permanent mark; but the material for his conclusions, which other workers
had a right to examine, has gone for ever. The tour de force of the theorist
is recorded as an example of his personal ingenuity or power, but to the
store of ascertained facts which are the food of science he has added
scarcely a single item.

It marks, therefore, a happy change in the prospects of Egyptian
archaeology when Germany, after many years' abstinence from field-work in
Egypt, again takes up her share of exploration and proceeds with character-
istic thoroughness to send out well-trained men ready to observe and record
as well as to find. It is to be hoped that the precedent set last season will
be permanently followed, and that a German organization will be estab-
lished working with the same aim as our own Society, to make sure the
foundations of Egyptian archaeology and build up a science destined to
be foremost among the archaeologies of the world iu completeness and
in chronological scope.
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