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Secrets of Ancient Egypt: between myth and reality

Sun, Sep. 17, 2017
CAIRO – 17 September 2017: Prominent historian and author Bassam El Shamaa spoke about common myths mentioned in Ancient Egyptian history during a lecture at the Egyptian Public Library on Saturday.

Shamaa pointed out a number of common myths about Ancient Egyptian history including the concept of "Pharaohs."

He explained that the correct name of the Ancient Egyptian era is "Ancient Egypt" not "Pharaohs," and clarified that the concept of "Pharaoh" was used in the period of the 18th Dynasty.

Ancient Egyptian rulers used other higher names such as the Son of Ra, and the King of Higher and Upper Egypt.

Another myth Shamaa tackled was the actual number of archaeological discoveries that were unearthed in Egypt.

Shamaa added that Egyptologist Sarah Parker revealed data resonating from using satellite technology, mentioning that less than one percent of antiquities in the country were discovered with more yet to be unearthed.

Famous archeologist, Zahi Hawas, previously stated that 30 percent of ancient Egyptian antiquities were discovered.

Another myth he mentioned was that the ancient Egyptian civilization grew on the banks of the Nile, although it originated around 100 kilometres west of Abu Simbel and was called Nabta Playa.

He also discussed the films that depicted the ancient Egyptian era such as “Araos El Nile” (Bride of the Nile) and Salah El Din films which depicted false historical events.

"No evidence was proven concerning the sacrifice of real women such as in “‘Aros El Nile”," Shamaa said, proving that the story of Bride of the Nile is completely false.

Concerning Merneptah Stele, Shamaa discovered that the label on the stele was printed as "Israel Stele" in the Egyptian Museum for 10 years.

Shamaa stated in a previous lecture that Israel wanted to own the stele after Egypt changed the label.

Egyptian officials studied Israel's naming of the stele and decided to remove it after 10 years of mislabelling.

"The next step that needs to be carried out in this case involves searching for who is responsible for this mistake and why no one spoke about it in the past 10 years," Shamaa told Egypt Today.

The Merneptah Stele was discovered in 1896 in Merneptah Temple and narrates the victories of Merneptah over the Libyans and their allies

Shamaa discovered his passion for Egyptian antiquities and archaeology during his visit to Nubia when he was a child.

He concluded his lecture by announcing his upcoming seminars that will be held in parallel to the celebrations of the October 6 national holiday at the Egyptian Public Library and El Sawy Culture Wheel.
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