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Monday, 27 September 2021

Golden Anniversary Conference: Fifty years of the Wellcome Collection at Swansea and beyond (1971–2021)

The blog post for this week has been written by Dr Dulcie Engel, a regular contributor. Dulcie is a former lecturer in French and linguistics and has been volunteering at the Egypt Centre for the last six years. She is a gallery supervisor and associate editor of the Volunteer Newsletter. Dulcie has a particular interest in collectors and the history of museums.

On three afternoons in mid-September (finishing on the actual anniversary, September 17th), the Egypt Centre hosted a Zoom conference to celebrate the transfer of approximately 4,500 objects, part of Henry Wellcome’s vast Egyptian and Sudanese collection, to Swansea in 1971 (fig. 1). This loan forms the bulk of the c. 6 000 objects, which the Egypt Centre now holds.

Fig. 1: Conference logo

The conference was a great success, superbly organised by Ken Griffin and Sam Powell. Twenty-three speakers took part; 361 tickets were issued to attendees from around the world, and total attendees for the three days amounted to 500. There were presentations by academics, curators, and postgraduates (including former Egypt Centre volunteers) from a range of institutions: the Wellcome Collection, the Egypt Exploration Society, the Petrie Museum (who organised the Egyptian dispersal), and museums that benefited from the dispersal: Swansea (now the Egypt Centre), Liverpool (World Museum), Durham (Oriental Museum), Manchester, Bolton, Cambridge (Fitzwilliam Museum), London (Science Museum); from researchers interested in Wellcome (collecting agents, Sudan excavations, plaster casts), and other collectors from whom Wellcome bought objects at auction. The sessions were recorded and most of the videos are now available via the Egypt Centre’s YouTube channel


The PowerPoint presentations showcased archival documentation and photos, which were wonderful to see. Indeed, a common theme running through the conference was the importance of collaboration on the Wellcome collection. In fact, one of the positive aspects of the COVID-19 Pandemic has been the rise in virtual placements for postgraduates, and virtual collaboration between institutions: the sharing of documents, and work on transcription (a project very much promoted by Ken at the Egypt Centre, and embraced by the Wellcome Collection with its Transcribathon). Indeed, more than one speaker referred to ‘detective work’ and made pleas for help with information. Another type of collaboration was the virtual matching up of pieces of objects in different museums: such as a pottery vase whose body is in Cambridge and whose handle is in Bolton (fig. 2). And it was sad to learn about lost or missing records and objects, in particular, the ‘ghosts’ in the Liverpool collection (objects destroyed in the Blitz, which linger on through surviving records and pictures). A strong theme was the recognition of the colonial context during the heyday of collecting, and the implications for modern displays and museums. We also heard about many strong and inspiring women in the history of collecting, museum patronage and curating: it was not just Amelia Edwards! To mention a few who stood out: Wellcome’s collecting agent Winifred Blackman, Bolton’s patron Annie Barlow, and inspiring curators Barbara Adams (Petrie), Elaine Tankard (Liverpool), and Kate Bosse-Griffiths (Swansea).


Fig. 2: Virtually reunited objects in Bolton and Cambridge

But it was not just talks: we heard memories of taking part in the 1971 dispersal at Durham and Swansea; we watched a wonderful film made for the public opening of the Swansea Wellcome Museum in 1976, which was only recently deposited at the University’s Richard Burton Archives. We had tours of stores and galleries at Manchester, Bolton and the Egypt Centre. There was also the launch of the Egypt Centre’s new ‘Egypt and its Neighbours’ case (fig. 3) and two very special announcements were made on the final day.

Fig. 3: New Egypt and its Neighbours case

Firstly, Anna Garnett of the Petrie Museum announced that the plaster cast of the Djedhor the Saviour statue (whose original is in Cairo) will be transferred to Swansea to be reunited with the cast of the base (fig. 4). It is possibly the first time any of Wellcome’s Egyptian material has been reunited following the dispersal of the collection, and is a project first discussed twenty years ago by our curator Carolyn Graves-Brown, and Stephen Quirke at the Petrie. Several months ago, Anna and Ken put a proposal together for the UCL museums committee to consider transferring the statue to Swansea, and learnt just two weeks before the conference that they had been successful. The Egypt Centre is very grateful to Anna and all those involved at UCL in making this happen and we look forward to receiving the statue in due course.

Fig. 4: Plaster cast of the Djedhor base (W302)

Secondly, Ken Griffin, Tom Hardwick, and Sam Powell launched the Virtual Collection of Hilton Price, a project started in June 2021. The catalogue, while still a work in progress, presents over 5,200 objects, which were dispersed widely following the sale of the collection in 1911 (fig. 5). Over 600 objects were purchased by Wellcome at this time, with many others in subsequent years; indeed several are in the Egypt Centre collection. An appeal was made to museums, researchers, and others to get in touch if they are aware of the current location of any Hilton Price objects. The Virtual Collection Hilton Price is available via the following link:

Fig. 5: Virtual Collection of Hilton Price homepage

So, all in all, a wonderfully successful conference, with the promise of many more collaborations on a number of fronts.

For a review of the conference in Hungarian, please see the blog of Fatima Farkas:

Monday, 20 September 2021

F. G. Hilton Price: the formation, disposal, and virtual reformation of his Egyptian collections

Last week, the Egypt Centre celebrated fifty years since part of the Wellcome collection arrived in Swansea in 1971 with a very successful Zoom conference (a review of the conference in next week’s blog). At the end of the event, the Hilton Price Virtual Collection was launched by Tom Hardwick, Sam Powell, and I (fig. 1). In June 2021, the Egypt Centrewho hold several objects originating from the Hilton Price collectionbegan work with Abaset Collections Ltd to create this project. The catalogue, while still a work in progress, presents over 5200 objects, which were dispersed widely following the sale of the collection in 1911. The aim of this project is to virtually reunite the collection, present new information on the objects, and make it easier for museums to identify Hilton Price objects in their own collections. As with any project like this, cooperation is essential. We are therefore calling upon museums, researchers, and others to get in touch with us if you are aware of the current location of any Hilton Price objects. The Hilton Price Virtual Collection is available via the following link:

Fig. 1: The Hilton Price Virtual Collection

The following blog post on the history of Hilton Price and his collection has been written by Tom Hardwick.

Frederick George Hilton Price was born in London, 20 August 1842, son of Frederick Price and Louisa Timpson. ‘Hilton’ was one of his forenames but seems to have been promoted to become a part of his surname, practically if not legally, early in his adult life (fig. 2). Frederick Price was a banker who eventually became partner in the London private bank Child & Co., and Hilton Price joined him at Child’s soon after leaving school.

Fig. 2: Frederick George Hilton Price (

By 1887 Hilton Price was a well-to-do man, married with two children, established in succession to his father as a partner in Child’s (he would become senior acting partner in 1901), and a founding member of the Institute of Bankers. Prosperity allowed him to pursue his antiquarian interests. He carried out excavations in the UK and formed collections of Egyptian and British objects, many of which he researched and published himself (fig. 3). He also brought his managerial abilities to bear on the antiquarian world: he served on the committees of the Anthropological Institute, the Society of Biblical Archaeology (joined 1878, member of council 1881, Vice-President 1901), the Geological Society, the Egypt Exploration Fund (becoming President in 1905), Flinders Petrie’s Egyptian Research Account (from 1894), and the Society of Antiquaries (becoming Director in 1894).

Fig. 3: Hilton Price’s bookplate from the manuscript catalogue

‘The adoption of the Overland Route to India via Egypt, and the opening of the Suez Canal in 1869, have drawn the attention of the civilized world to Egypt to a remarkable degree,’ Hilton Price stated in the preface to the first printed volume of his catalogue. The last third of the nineteenth century saw an explosion of financial and political interest in Egypt, effectively stemming from Mohamed Ali’s modernization of the country and his heirs’ construction of the Suez Canal. The assumption of Franco-British control over Egyptian finances in 1876, and the invitation of British armed forces to quash a rebellion in 1882, led to the so-called ‘veiled protectorate’, which further encouraged British investment in Egypt. Ancient Egyptian objects were part of this. Not only did emboldened tourists acquire objects through a legal (and semi-legal) market for antiquities, but foreign residents—soldiers, diplomats, priests, doctors, businessmen—also collected souvenirs of their new home. Foreign excavators, notably in Britain the Egypt Exploration Fund and Flinders Petrie’s various combines, benefited from generous official divisions of their finds, which were then passed on to sponsoring institutions and individuals.

It was in this milieu that Hilton Price formed his Egyptian collection, with surviving documentation showing that he was already a seasoned collector by the early 1880s. He regularly exhibited Egyptian objects from his collection for discussion and ‘publication’ at the Society of Biblical Archaeology, and was a committee member of, and significant lender to, the 1895 Exhibition of the Art of Ancient Egypt organized by the Burlington Fine Arts Club. He funded Petrie’s work from the 1880s, and later John Garstang’s excavations at Abydos and Beni Hasan. He set up and hosted a hieroglyphic reading group later tutored by Wallis Budge, and organized subscriptions to defray the cost of turning Budge’s transcriptions into a book for the public. Hilton Price also speculated with his collections, regularly consigning antiquities for sale at Sotheby’s, the leading British auction house for antiquities, as part of a continual process of expanding and upgrading his collection.

Hilton Price’s non-Egyptian collections and publications have, naturally, received little attention from Egyptologists, but are likely to have been just as—if not more—significant to him as his Egyptian collections. His horological collection was important enough for him to have lent it to the Victoria and Albert Museum, and it was sold en bloc after his death for £5,000 to the American collector J. P. Morgan (whose son donated it to the Metropolitan Museum); a significant part of his British collections was purchased and donated to form the nucleus of the London Museum, which opened in 1912, later becoming part of the Museum of London; other objects, including his collection of spoons, were sold at Sotheby’s between 1909–11, while his coins were sold at two sales in 1909 and 1910.

Hilton Price wrote and published two lavish catalogues of his Egyptian collection in 1897 and 1908 (fig. 4), which describe, and in many cases illustrate, 5027 numbered objects or groups of objects (including objects with a, b, c etc suffixes, this rises to 5288 objects, with scope for further expansion among entries for ‘a lot’ of objects). These numbers were written or printed on adhesive labels that Hilton Price fixed to the objects. Long out of copyright and now available online, the two printed catalogues are the backbone of this database.

Fig. 4: Frontispiece from volume 1 of the manuscript catalogue

The printed catalogues were not, however, Hilton Price’s first venture at cataloguing his collection. Four bound volumes in the possession of one of Hilton Price’s descendants contain manuscript entries for many of the objects in Volume 1 of his published catalogue. These entries were not copied verbatim by the printers: they use a different classification system to, and illustrate many more objects than the published catalogue, and often provide information on the origins of objects not included in a catalogue for public consumption (fig. 5). The manuscript catalogues have recently been digitized and transcribed at Swansea University, and data from them are being included in this database, linked where possible to objects in the published catalogue.

Fig. 5: Comparison of the printed catalogue (left) and unpublished manuscript (right). A114 = 2438 and A115 = 2440

At Hilton Price’s death in March 1909, his will entrusted his collections to his executor Charles Hercules Read (1857–1929), President of the Society of Antiquaries and Keeper at the British Museum. Read was commanded as trustee to sell all ‘things in the nature of curios of which I shall at my death have a collection’ and to invest the proceeds and disperse them to his heirs. Henry Solomon Wellcome (1853–1936), pharmaceutical magnate and avid collector of ‘medical’ objects, enquired about the Egyptian collection in June 1909, but received no reply from Read. The Egyptian collection was finally sold at Sotheby’s in London over eight days in summer 1911 (fig. 6).

Fig. 6: Auction catalogue cover page

Hilton Price’s 5089 numbered objects (published up to 5027, the others acquired afterwards) formed the largest group of Egyptian antiquities to come on the British market in living memory, and they fetched a respectable £12,039/18/6 – the equivalent of somewhere between £1,200,000 and £11,500,000 today, depending on the metrics used. The text of the sale catalogue naturally drew on the published catalogues, but perforce did not include as much information, and listed and grouped objects in different combinations—groupings made not to inform, to but rather to sell well. Just under 40% of the objects had their published catalogue numbers listed in their descriptions in the auction catalogue. A concordance of object numbers to the auction numbers was compiled and published by Charles Cornell Van Siclen III in 1985. In order to help viewers at the sale, and packers afterwards, many objects were given labels with the lot number on, to join Hilton Price’s own numbered labels (fig. 7).

Fig. 7: Object with Hilton Price number (3335) and auction number (746/4) – National Museums Liverpool: World Museum 1973.4.464 (

Wellcome was one of 71 purchasers at the sale, according to annotated copies of the auction catalogue—although Wellcome did not bid in person for his embryonic Historical Medical Museum (HMM) but entrusted the bidding to his assistant Henry Charles Bourne (1858–1936). Wellcome/Bourne acquired 81 lots containing at least 641 objects for £282/4/- or, 5.3% of the lots containing 10.9% of the objects for 2.3% of the total cost. Wellcome ended up as the largest purchaser of objects at the sale by a considerable margin, and commissioned a 73-page handwritten Inventory of Objects purchased at The Hilton Price Sale. Sothebys, July 12-July 21 1911, now in the Wellcome Collection archives (WA/HMM/CM/Sal/20/292). This was undertaken by the Assyriologist William St. Chad Boscawen (1855–1913), who was tasked by Wellcome to catalogue the Egyptian antiquities. Boscawen gave objects a new number, prefixed HP, and referenced the auction lot number and (where known, whether from the auction catalogue or the objects themselves) Hilton Price’s collection number. The list may even have been checked over by Wellcome himself, as his initials HSW accompany many of the objects. Objects and inventory were connected by affixing round plain white paper labels, containing the HP number handwritten in black ink, to the object (fig. 8).

Fig. 8: Object with auction number (736/7) and Wellcome inventory number (HP530) – Liverpool World Museum 1973.1.420 (

Private collectors stocked up at the Hilton Price sale. The Rev. William MacGregor (1848–1937), a near contemporary of Hilton Price, commissioned the London dealer Spink to purchase a number of pieces: these would be sold again at the even larger and more successful auction of his collection in 1922. Lord Carnarvon’s purchases at the sale, made through the London dealer Feuardent, would pass to the Metropolitan Museum in New York in 1926 (fig. 9).

Fig. 9: Gaming piece (Hilton Price 2958), which is now in the Metropolitan Museum of Art – MMA 26.7.1452 (


William Randolph Hearst (1863–1951) spent over £1,000 on 108 lots through the dealer William Permain, while the British collectors Joseph John Acworth (1853–1927) and Edwin Sydney Hartland (1848–1927) bought in their own names. The largest purchasers by number of lots and objects, however, were dealers, such as S. G. Fenton, G. F. Lawrence, and Robert de Rustafjaell (1859–1943) from London, Kalebjian Frères from Paris, and Ralph Huntington Blanchard (1875–1936) from Cairo—a reminder of the global nature of the trade in Egyptian antiquities.

Wellcome acquired many more Hilton Price objects after the sale, both from dealers and sales of collections formed after 1911. The Hilton Price connection was sometimes noted when the objects were catalogued in the Welcome Historical Medical Museum (WHMM), or can be reconstructed from the survival of a Hilton Price collection label or sale lot label on the object itself (fig. 10).

Fig. 10: Terracotta frog (Hilton Price 3580), which was purchased by Wellcome in 1931 – Egypt Centre W219 (

Wellcome died in 1936 and his vision for his sprawling collections (of which the roughly 20,000 Egyptian objects formed a small percentage) died with him. The trustees of the Wellcome Foundation decided to dispose of what they considered the less relevant parts of his collections, a process that took nearly fifty years. Museums around Britain received donations of Egyptian material; most significantly in the case of Swansea University, where the donation transformed the University’s collection and study of Egyptology. Recent work on the Egypt Centre’s collection has focused on the histories of objects, and many Hilton Price objects have been re-identified in the Egypt Centre and elsewhere.

There is clearly no shortage of information about Hilton Price’s Egyptian objects. The Hilton Price Virtual Collection, combining manuscript catalogues, printed catalogues, sale catalogue, Wellcome list, and object labels, should allow many hitherto anonymous objects to be identified as having belonged to Hilton Price, and their paths from Egypt to their current locations mapped out in considerable detail.

Further reading:

Bierbrier, Morris L. 2019. Who was who in Egyptology, 5th revised ed. London: Egypt Exploration Society. p. 376

Hardwick, Tom. ‘Many marks of many hands’ (article on Hilton Price’s manuscript catalogue, in press; source of this introduction).

Larson, Frances 2009. An infinity of things: how Sir Henry Wellcome collected the world. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Oxford Dictionary of National Biography entry on Hilton Price:

Hilton Price the banker: 

Monday, 13 September 2021

More Than Just a Load of Old Dice

This past week I decided to photograph a collection of fourteen dice, which are currently displayed in the games case in the House of Life (fig. 1). Like modern dice, most are six-sided and cubed. Cubic dice have been in use in the Near East since the third millennium BC, with different systems used at different times for distributing the pips. In Egypt, examples dating to the New Kingdom are reported as isolated finds at Amarna, Lisht, and Deir el-Bahari. The numbering of the opposite sides (1-6, 2-5, 3-4), each adding up to seven, comes into more general use only later. During the Graeco-Roman Period, cubic dice became more common and gradually replaced throwing sticks and knucklebones for use with board games. Numerous examples have been found at Naukratis.

Fig. 1: Egypt Centre dice

W508–W515 is a group of eight dice that are listed in the Egypt Centre catalogue as coming from the collection the Reverend William MacGregor (1842–1937), which were sold at auction in 1922. These dice are listed in the auction catalogue (lot 671) as “five Ivory Dice, four of cubicle form, the other half cubicle; another, in granite, well worn at the edges; one in steatite; and one in pale green faience.” Unfortunately, there are no details as to the provenance or dating of the objects. When they came to Swansea in 1971, they were accompanied by a Wellcome object card (A15598), which provided a brief description for each item, sometimes with MacGregor’s own numbering system noted (fig. 2). Since stickers with these numbers are still on some of the dice, this is particularly useful as it has allowed us to pair up each of the items in Swansea with those listed on the flimsy slip.

Fig. 2: Wellcome flimsy slip A15598

As noted in the auction catalogue, four of the dice are in bone/ivory of cubic form (W508, W509, W513, W515). The pips on the first three of these show a dot-in-circle motif, which recalls designs presumed to be of magical significance. This is possibly an abstract eye to ward off the evil-eye, which serve an apotropaic function. Easily reproduced with a tool and visible in many cultures and times, this symbol may have lost its meaning, and become simply a decorative pattern, or may have one that we have not yet discovered (fig. 3). The fourth (W515) is very similar to our own dice in which the pips have a solid black fill. W510 is also made of bone, but is half cubic in form. This die is particularly well worn with the pips (dot-in-circle motif) only just visible on the long sides.

Fig. 3: W513

The three remaining dice from the MacGregor sale are made of faience (W511), stone (W512), and steatite (W514). The faience die is circular in shape with pips taking the form of the dot-in-circle motif. The stone die is the largest of all the dice in the Egypt Centre collection, with the dot-in-circle pips and worn corners showing signs of heavy use. At the opposite side of the scale in terms is size is the steatite die, which is one of the smallest in the collection. Yet it is also one of the most interesting in terms of production, with traces of an orange pigment present in the dot-in-circle pips (fig. 4). The composition of this fill is currently unknown, but it is something that could potentially be researched in the future using modern scientific techniques.

Fig. 4: Orange pigment in W514

Five other dice (W516–W519, W521) can be traced back to the collection of Frederick George Hilton Price (1842–1909), who formed one of the largest private collections of Egyptian antiquities ever assembled, which was sold at auction in 1911. Yet it wasn’t until 1931 that the dice—along with one other not in the Egypt Centre collection—were purchased by Henry Wellcome. W516 is a mosaic glass die, which is dark blue with yellow and red pips (fig 5). The number on the object (4085) relates to Hilton Price’s own numbering system, with the object being published by the collector in the second of his two catalogues in 1908. This die is identical to one in the Rijksmuseum van Oudheden, Leiden, which is dated to the first century.

Fig. 5: W516

W517 is a rectangular die with only the long sides numbered (1, 2, 5, 6). On one of the short sides, F.480 has been written in black ink. This represents the old numbering system used by Hilton Price when cataloguing his collection in four unpublished manuscripts compiled in 1894. This was later replaced in 1896 by a sequential numbering system (2978 for this object) when Hilton Price published the first of his catalogues. However, the unpublished manuscripts often include additional information and images of the objects not found in the two published catalogues (fig. 6). Hilton Price dated this rectangular die to the Roman Period, noting that it came from Maṣr ‘Atîḳa, which was used by Europeans to refer to Old Cairo (Fustat). The three remaining dice from the Hilton Price collection are made of bone (W518), steatite (W519), and stone (W521). A further example in the Egypt Centre (EC1483) is made of lead. Although lead dice are attested in Egypt, the provenance and collection history of EC1483 is completely unknown at present.

Fig. 6: W517 in the Hilton Price unpublished manuscript

While these objects might seem small and mundane, they are items that people today can closely relate to. I often wonder who would have used these dice and in what context. Photographing them up close also helped me to appreciate how they were produced, particularly with the bone examples showing scratch marks of the craftsman who made them (fig. 7).

Fig. 7: W508 displaying extensive cut marks

Postscript: While writing this blog over the weekend, I came across an image of a cylindrical box identified as a throwing cup (12.181.259a, b) by the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York. This immediately reminded me of a similar object in the Egypt Centre collection (EC1448) for which we had no photo on file. So, the first thing on Monday morning, I checked on the object in the store and the similarities are very striking (fig. 8)! The surface interior appears to have heavy denting, perhaps as a result of shaking the dice. This item comes from the 1906 auction of Robert de Rustafjaell (1859–1943), with writing on the underside suggesting that it comes from Akhmim. 

Fig. 8: Possible throwing cup (EC1448)

Monday, 6 September 2021

Forthcoming Egypt Centre Courses

Over the past year, the Egypt Centre has organised eight successful short courses via Zoom. This new platform allowed us to attract a larger and more international audience. These courses have been attended by over 1000 participants, which is much more than what would have been possible had they taken place at Swansea. Sessions take place on Sunday evenings and are repeated live on Wednesday mornings. Additionally, recordings of the sessions are made available to students via our online catalogue. Thus, the courses are accessible to participants wherever they are in the world, regardless of time differences or other commitments! In the coming weeks, two ten-week courses will commence, which this blog post outlining the details.

A History of Egypt through the Egypt Centre Collection

With spectacular monuments such as the pyramids and sphinx, and a view of the afterlife that produced thousands of mummies, myths, and artefacts, ancient Egypt has fascinated everyone from Napoleon Bonaparte to school children around the world. Pharaonic history spanned more than 3,000 years and included famous figures such as Tutankhamun, Ramesses the Great, and Cleopatra. This course presents a brief history of ancient Egypt through the artefacts housed in the Egypt Centre collection. Each session will include a one hour overview of the period followed by a one hour presentation of the objects from that era in the museum’s collection, many of which are not on public display. This is taught by Dr Ken Griffin and moderated by Sam Powell.

Fig. 1: Soldier stela dating to the First Intermediate Period (W1366)


In order to be as accessible as possible, this course will be run twice, with sessions taking place via Zoom:

- Sunday evenings 6–8pm (UK time) - Starting Sunday 26th September

- Wednesday mornings 10am–noon (UK time) - Starting Wednesday 29th September

By purchasing a ticket for this event, you can attend either the Sunday or Wednesday session, or both, depending on your schedule. A week before the course starts, you will be emailed the Zoom link, which can be used for both sessions. Therefore, participants will have the option of attending either day, or both!



Week 1: The Predynastic & Early Dynastic Periods

Week 2: The Old Kingdom

Week 3: The First Intermediate Period

Week 4: The Middle Kingdom

Week 5: The Second Intermediate Period

Week 6: The New Kingdom

Week 7: The Amarna Period

Week 8: The Third Intermediate Period

Week 9: The Late Period

Week 10: The Graeco-Roman Period



This course costs £70, with fees going directly to supporting the Egypt Centre. In particular, the funds will be used to purchase a new writing case for the House of Life gallery. Additionally, participants have the option of adding an extra donation if they wish. Donations, of course, are greatly appreciated! Once you have booked, you will automatically receive a confirmation email from Eventbrite. If you haven’t received anything within 24 hours, please contact Ken at

To book on this course, please use the following link:


Explore with Me: Textiles and Ancient Egypt

Ancient Egyptian textiles appear in museums all across the world, from mummy wrappings to diaphanous flowing white robes and even colourful early medieval garments, but how much do we really know about them? This 10-week Zoom course will allow us to look closer at the methods and practices used to create pieces like those we can see in the Egypt Centre and other museum collections. We will experiment with the possibility of dyeing linen and explore the effectiveness of plant dyes, learn how flax was harvested, how ancient looms were set up, and even make thread without spinning. You are welcome to take part in the experiments with me as we investigate together each week, or watch and discover what we learn as the results come in. I don’t promise to give you all the answers, but rather this is an invitation for you to explore with me. These sessions will be designed to be suitable for everyone no matter your level of experience with textiles or knowledge of ancient Egypt. Although I will be aiming these sessions at adults, children are welcome to attend if supervised. This course is taught by Dr Carolyn Graves Brown (Egypt Centre Curator).

Fig. 2: Weavers in the tomb of Khnumhotep II at Beni Hasan (

Basic course details:

- Free 10-week interactive zoom course

- 3–5pm every Thursday for 10 weeks, starting Thursday 23rd September 

Upon booking, you will receive an automated email from Eventbrite with further details, including the Zoom link. If you haven’t received confirmation within 24-hours please contact Carolyn Graves-Brown at

To book on this course, please use the following link: 

Of course, don't forget that our fiftieth anniversay conference starts in less than two weeks, with free tickets availavle here: