PETRIE Sir Flinders - Autograph Letter Signed 1919 regarding the placing of amulets on mummies
Flinders PETRIE (1853-1942)Autograph Letter Signed (“W.M.F. Petrie”) to “Dear Miss Compton”, discussing the positioning of amulets on mummies.
2 pages 8vo, 5 Cannon Place, NW3, 24 June 1919.
“There is often much confusion in the placing of amulets, see for instance Abydos I LXXVIII, where the actual positions and the presumed intention are placed together. The amulets were strung, laid on the mummy, & then misplaced by the bandages, & perhaps turning the mummy. You will see on No 4 of the plans what a jumble there was, which then defied interpretation. On going over your list with the plan I quite see it is the same lot, only now 7 & 9 were so jumbled that I could not say how they were & so omitted them. The reason for the places on the card is that in 5 those amulets are in that relation to [hieroglyph] and [hieroglyph].
I do not see why I put the row 1 of gods so low down. It ought by the plan to go up before 10. That is the only change. That is the best set found, after Cairo had kept Horusa.
I expect to be in London till 29 July, & shall be very happy to see you when you can come up.”
Petrie’s correspondent was most likely Winifred Compton of the Manchester Museum, a supporter of his work.
Petrie’s careful, methodical approach revolutionised archaeology. His excavations in Egypt from the 1880s onwards, and later in Palestine, where he died in 1942, laid the foundations for the study of ancient Egypt to this day.
The integral blank leaf has been cut away, quite possibly by Petrie himself, and there is very slight fraying at the right margin, but the letter is otherwise in very good condition.
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