This lecture will be held in room B19 of the
Boston University School of Theology
Old Kingdom power is epitomized by the Great Pyramids, those huge monuments which were, and remain to this day, symbolic of the sheer might and power of the kings who dominate almost all surviving evidence. But what of those with lesser power, working underneath the king for the state at large - the men stationed throughout the provinces, running Egypt as local leaders and provincial administrators? The terms “nome” and “nomarch” are widely used in Egyptology as the basic framework for discussing and understanding the structure of provincial administration of the Old - Middle Kingdoms, despite the fact that these are much later Greek words. This talk traces the origins and problems of these terms, highlighting how their anachronistic application to the Old-Middle Kingdoms has served to obscure rather than illuminate our understanding of the mechanics of early provincial administration.