Graeco-Egyptian Coffins, Masks and Portraits (Classic Reprint)

Graeco-Egyptian Coffins, Masks and Portraits (Classic Reprint)

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Excerpt from Graeco-Egyptian Coffins, Masks and Portraits

The objects described in the following catalogue belong for the most part to the last stages of the history of mi mummy-decoration in Egypt. They council of those pieces in which the Greek element is either predominant or strongly province. I have irrationally not included everything which showed marks of Greek influence, for the change of style was gradual and part of the transitional matter will go more appropriately into another volume. A separate publication of the Greek portion of the series was advisable on practical grounds, lint everyone who has studied the subject will recognize that it is impossible to make a really satisfactory division of the material. The masks mid mummies which are published here cannot lie rightly appreciated without some knowledge of the Egyptian types from which they are descended.

The work of photographing the collection was kindly undertaken by Brugsch Bey. I have also to thank several of my colleagues for help on various points, especially with regard to the Egyptian inscriptions.

The following notes are intended as explanatory matter for the student who is not a specialist in this field. I have not strayed beyond the limits of the collection and have not attempted to sketch the history of Greco-Egyptian burial customs and funerary art, winch is far loo large subject to be treated here. This introduction indeed might for the most part have lieu incorporated in the text of the catalogue, but I prefer to separate wall is still partly conjecture and theory from what is merely description. The subject is one about which one finds very different opinions in archaeological writings, though I cannot but think that if it were more carefully studied as a whole, there would at least he a general agreement about the main outlines of it.

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