The Ancient Historian

Ancient history, mountaineering, cycling and other outside adventures

Archive for the day “April 23, 2009”

Cleopatra’s tomb discovered?

Well, I’ve been traveling, and Ive missed quite a lot to blog about. Always the way no doubt. I’ll figure out how to blog and travel at the same time soon. Since Yale’s year is nearly finished, I’ll have a few more minutes in the day to add more thoughts on interesting topics soon. Meanwhile, the news comes from Cairo that on the Mediterranean shore, at a site called Taposiris Magna, (some) archaeologists are claiming the discovery of the final resting place of the last Ptolemaic ruler, Cleopatra, and Marc Antony. Since this covers the subject of my academic research, Ptolemaic Egypt, I do have to cover this. The inimitable Zahi Hawaas, the head of the Supreme Council of Antiquities in Egypt, claims that a mummy mask complete with cleft chin may be the clincher. The announced “discovery” has generated the usual hubbub, and the expected speculation. As far as I can see so far, no evidence has come to light which proves much of anything, and History is not in danger of being changed, even if so much of it on the subject of Cleopatra is literary propaganda generated after her death. You can read about some of this in a recent post in the New York Times. All of it, for the moment, amounts to nothing in terms of History in my humble opinion, but it’s at least cool. Stay tuned.

archaelogist460_1387151c Photo © EPA

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