• Harvard University, Emerson Hall (map)
  • 25 Quincy Street
  • Cambridge, MA 02138
  • USA

This lecture will be held at Harvard University in Emerson Hall, Room 101

A lecture by

Georgia Long
PhD Fellow in Egyptian Archaeology
Research Foundation Flanders, University of Leuven

In 1915 George Reisner directed an extensive excavation in the Middle Egyptian provincial necropolis of Dayr al-Barsha on behalf of Harvard University and the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston. Although this expedition is mostly known for the find of ‘Tomb 10A’ -the burial equipment of which is now an important part of the collection of the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston- several other funerary complexes were excavated during the same archaeological season. Among them was the tomb of Nehri I, one of the local governors that ruled over the Dayr al-Barsha region during the Middle Kingdom. Virtually all of the material found in his tomb in 1915 was eventually shipped to the MFA and some of the finest objects are currently on display next to the assemblage of Tomb 10A. Most of the excavated burial assemblage, however, was packed as a confusing puzzle of fragmentary bits and pieces that have been kept within museum storage ever since their arrival in Boston in the early 20th century.

Just over 100 years after Reisner’s presence at the site, the Belgian archaeological mission of KU Leuven carried out new excavations in the tomb of governor Nehri I. Taking off where Reisner had ended, the modern archaeological research sheds a light on the excavation history of the tomb, the original find contexts of the burial equipment and the nature of the objects found within. The excavations also resulted in some extraordinary joins to the fragments now kept in the storage of the MFA, hence solving a part of the object puzzle. With the help of 3D imaging and modeling, it is now possible to tie together the results of several stages of archaeological research and present some pieces that have waited over a century to be reunited.