Discovering Ancient Egypt

Explore Ancient Egypt at the National Museum of Australia

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Discover the fascinating wonders of this ancient civilization at the National Museum of Australia in Canberra. The exhibition, “Discovering Ancient Egypt,” will be running from December 15, 2023, to September 8, 2024.

Immerse yourself in the history and culture of ancient Egypt through a captivating exhibition from the Dutch National Museum of Antiquities, that presents more than 220 fascinating objects spanning over 3,000 years of society and culture. Explore daily life along the Nile, from intricately decorated coffins and extracts from the Book of the Dead to stunning art, jewelry, sculptures, and everyday artifacts, including household pottery and objects for worship.

You can step into a life-sized temple re-creation, witness depictions of Egyptian gods like Isis and Horus, and even try hands-on activities to get a taste of this ancient world. The exhibition not only explores the religious beliefs of ancient Egypt but also delves into the intriguing journey to the eternal afterlife.

In addition to the impressive artifacts on display, the exhibition focuses on the history of discovery, inviting visitors to consider the role of museums in working with Egyptian communities to document and present ancient cultures. Key moments in Egyptian archaeology, such as the unearthing of the Rosetta Stone during Napoleon’s military campaign to Egypt and the discovery of the tomb of the young pharaoh Tutankhamun, are explored alongside the Dutch museum’s archaeological discoveries over decades, including at the ancient burial grounds of Saqqara.

Images: Inner coffin of Amenhotep (detail), 21st Dynasty, about 1076–944 BCE, Thebes, Egypt © Rijksmuseum van Oudheden
The presentation of the exhibition is a collaboration between the Rijksmuseum van Oudheden (National Museum of Antiquities, Leiden, the Netherlands), the National Museum of Australia, the Western Australian Museum and the Queensland Museum Network.