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Journey Through the Afterlife: Ancient Egyptian Book of the Dead

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Journey Through the Afterlife: Ancient Egyptian Book of the Dead Cover

 

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

The Book of the Dead is not a single text but a compilation of spells that the ancient Egyptians believed would assist them in the afterlife as they made their perilous journey toward the realm of the gods and the ultimate state of eternity. No two copies are identical. The spells are often accompanied by colored vignettes, which graphically show the imagined landscape of the Netherworld, the gods and demons whom the deceased will meet, and the critical "weighing of the heart"--the judgment that will determine whether the traveler will be admitted into the afterlife or condemned to destruction by the monstrous "Devourer." With contributions from leading scholars and detailed catalog entries that interpret the spells and painted scenes, this fascinating and important book affords a greater understanding of ancient Egyptian belief systems and poignantly reveals the hopes and fears of mortal man about the "world" beyond death. The whole is beautifully illustrated with specially commissioned photographs of these exceptional papyri and an array of contextual funerary objects--painted coffins, gilded masks, amulets, jewelry, tomb figurines, and mummy trappings.

Book News Annotation:

Curators and conservators at the British Museum worked together closely to choose items for the exhibition that would not suffer irreparable harm from exposure to light. They judged that many interesting colored papyri were too fragile and must wait for display until the science of conservation is developed enough to protect them. Nevertheless, a gorgeous selection of objects was agreed upon, and this volume is the catalogue for the exhibition. Taylor explains in the preface that the Book of the Dead is a collection of writings and spells transmitted through the ages via text and images on tombs and coffins but primarily via papyrus rolls, of which thousands of examples have survived. The writings were translated and studied in the early 19th century, but modern interpretations have supplemented or supplanted some of the early interpretations. This beautifully produced volume (which measures 11x8.5") offers narrative, scholarly analysis, and more than 150 images with extended captions--leading readers on the journey through life and death as it was understood by the ancient Egyptians. Two concluding essays discuss the making of the Book of the Dead, and a history of its study. This book has wide appeal for an audience of professional and amateur Egyptologists, art historians, conservators, and philosophers. Annotation ©2011 Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)

Synopsis:

With contributions from leading scholars and detailed catalog entries that interpret the spells and painted scenes, this fascinating and important work affords a greater understanding of ancient Egyptian belief systems and poignantly reveals the hopes and fears about the world beyond death.

About the Author

John H. Taylor is a curator at the British Museum specializing in ancient Egyptian funerary archaeology.

British Museum

Product Details

ISBN:
9780674057500
Author:
Taylor, John H.
Publisher:
Harvard University Press
Location:
Cambridge
Subject:
History - Ancient/Classical
Subject:
Subjects & Themes - Religious
Subject:
Art - General
Subject:
ART / Subjects & Themes/Religious
Subject:
Social Science-Customs & Traditions
Subject:
SOCIAL SCIENCE / Death & Dying
Copyright:
Publication Date:
November 2010
Binding:
HARDCOVER
Grade Level:
General/trade
Language:
English
Illustrations:
240 color illustrations
Pages:
312
Dimensions:
11 x 11 in

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Related Subjects

Arts and Entertainment » Art » General
Arts and Entertainment » Art » Religious
History and Social Science » Archaeology » Egypt

Journey Through the Afterlife: Ancient Egyptian Book of the Dead New Hardcover
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Product details 312 pages Harvard University Press - English 9780674057500 Reviews:
"Synopsis" by , With contributions from leading scholars and detailed catalog entries that interpret the spells and painted scenes, this fascinating and important work affords a greater understanding of ancient Egyptian belief systems and poignantly reveals the hopes and fears about the world beyond death.
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