• Museum of Fine Arts, Boston (map)
  • 465 Huntington Avenue
  • Boston, MA, 02115
  • United States

This lecture will be held in the Art of the Ancient World Library at

The Museum of Fine Arts, Boston

Fustat (Cairo), just north of pre-Islamic Babylon (now called Old Cairo), was the site of the first Muslim settlement in Egypt in 641 and as it expanded northward continued to be the administrative capital until 969. In the late 19th century farmers, treasure hunters and nearby residents began “digging” in Fustat but it was only 1912 – 1924 that formal archaeological work began. This was followed by a hiatus until an American was given permission to excavate in 1964. Why were there these long periods of neglect for such an important historical site? How did an American become the catalyst for a revival of excavation work? What are some of the minor “finds” found, legally and illegally, in Fustat and what can they tell us of Egypt’s Islamic past?

If you are not an MFA member, please contact Denise Doxey at ddoxey@mfa.org, who will put your name on a list so that you may attend the lecture for free.