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The Transmission of the Book of the Dead in New Kingdom Tombs at Saqqara : Bloomsbury Egyptology - Huw Twiston Davies

The Transmission of the Book of the Dead in New Kingdom Tombs at Saqqara

By: Huw Twiston Davies

Hardcover | 14 November 2024

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Texts and images from the Book of the Dead were widely used to decorate the walls of tombs during Egypt's New Kingdom (c. 1550-1077 BCE). Prior research has tended to focus on either individual tombs, or on the contents of papyrus copies of the Book of the Dead. This book focusses on the adaptation of parts of this funerary corpus in individual tombs from the New Kingdom necropolis at Saqqara, with the aim of showing how each tomb's decoration was tailored to the ends of their builders. In doing so, it builds up a picture of the ways in which these developments changed over time, and captures the dynamic and shifting ways in which ancient Egyptians interacted with their funerary texts. This contrasts with the popular image of Egyptian religion as centrally administered and directed, and essentially unchanging over millennia. In fact, choices and forms of texts and images used in tombs changed even within a single generation. Some forms remained popular over long periods, being constantly reused and re-adapted, while others achieved specific and local popularity, or else were abandoned after only a short period of time. This book argues powerfully for the human dimension in ancient Egyptian religion, revealing the ways in which individuals and groups continually reshaped their tradition even as they worked within it. Produced as part of the research project The Walking Dead at Saqqara: The Making of a Cultural Geography, this book is kindly funded by the Dutch Research Council (NWO).

The eBook editions of this book are available open access under a CC BY-NC-ND 4.0 licence on bloomsburycollections.com. Open access was funded by the Dutch Research Council (NWO): 276-30-016.

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