Egyptology

The Big Void

By Robert M. Schoch, Ph.D.

During the first week of November 2017, an announcement made headlines around the world—a previously unknown major “void” (a hollow or chamber) had been discovered in the Great Pyramid on the Giza Plateau of Egypt. Often referred to as the Khufu Pyramid, after its reputed builder the pharaoh Khufu who ruled Egypt during the late twenty-sixth century BCE, no new significant rooms or chambers had been found in the Great Pyramid since the first half of the nineteenth century when the explorer Richard William Howard…

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Egyptology: Science or Art?

By Will Hart

Archaeology is a sub-discipline of anthropology, the study of humans. Archaeologists conduct studies of the human past. According to the textbooks archaeology is a science. We presume this means that archaeologists adhere to the scientific method when performing field investigations and interpreting the evidence that they find. For the moment, let us accept that premise. Now, let’s briefly consider the claim that archaeology is a science. First, though, we must ask the following: what is science? In fact there is no single definition of the…

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Khufu Papyri Unveiled

By Robert M. Schoch, Ph.D.

On 14 July 2016, my wife Katie and I had the privilege of attending, by special invitation, the opening of the first public exhibition of the “Papyri of King Khufu from Wadi Al-Jarf” at the Egyptian Museum, Tahrir Square, Cairo. None other than Zahi Hawass, the former Minister of Antiquities, has called the Khufu Papyri “the greatest discovery in Egypt in the twenty first century” (quoted by Alexander Stille, Smithsonian Magazine, October 2015). Listening to the dignitaries speak, I wondered. Viewing the papyri through the…

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