PUBLICATIONS on Egyptology and Ancient History

Posted July 23rd, 2014 by Dylan

Whilst not exhaustive, this list attempts to list the majority of my published works in the area of Ancient History.

An Ancient Egyptian Case Book. Canopus Press 2014. Now Available.      A collection of extended and developed articles: 4 concerning discoveries relating to the Amarna/Post-Amarna Period; 6 concerning royal mummies and their examination; 3 dramatic historical episodes derived from ancient texts; and 1 ‘ghostly’ adventure from the early days of Egyptology.

Refugees for Eternity. The Royal Mummies of Thebes: Their Journeys and Resting Places.


Part One. Finding the Pharaohs. In Progress. Due end 2015.  The discovery of royal tombs and mummies in the modern era.

Part Two. The Rise and Fall of the Theban Royal House and Necropolis. In Progess.  From the obscure tombs of heroes, to the grand sepulchres of a fallen age.

Part Three. Clues from the Caches. In Progress.  How and why the caches were created at the end of the New Kingdom.

Part Four. Identifying the Royal Mummies. Canopus Press, 2009. Now Available.  A thorough evaluation of the methods used and how good they are with each Theban Royal Mummy individually assessed.

Dylan Bickerstaffe, ‘History of the Discovery of the Cache’, Chapter 1 in,Eds. Erhart Graefe and Galina Belova, The Royal Cache TT320: A Re Examination, SCA (Cairo 2010), 13-36.  This is the official publication following the re-clearance of the Royal Cache tomb in which were found the mummies of such famous figures as Ahmose I, Amenhotep I, Ahmose Nefertari, Thutmose III, Seti I, Ramesses II, and Ramesses III. I spent time at the site with Professor Graefe during the 2003, 2004, and 2005 seasons. My contribution here covers both the original discovery by the Abd er Rassul brothers, and the clearance following the surrender of the tomb to Emile Brugsch on behalf of the Antiquities Service in 1881.

Graefe, Erhart / Bickerstaffe, Dylan: ‘Die sogenannte königliche Cachette TT320 war keinesfalls das Grab der Ahmose-Nofretere!’ Gottinger Miszellen, Heft 239 (Gottingen 2013), 115-119. The title of the article translates as: ‘The so-called Royal Cache TT320 was not the tomb of Ahmose Nefertari’, and draws on points made by both of us, to refute the theory put forward by David Aston in GM 236 (2013), based on his re-dating of much of the pottery from the tomb.


Kmt: A Modern Journal of Ancient Egypt.  This American publication has appeared quarterly since Spring 1990 and has featured contributions from many eminent Egyptologists. Articles are fully referenced.


‘Hidden in Plain Sight: The facts Surrounding the Burial of Unknown Man E’, Kmt 10.1 (Spring 1999), 68-76. Prior to the release of Identifying the Royal Mummies (see above) this was the most comprehensive coverage of the reports on the strange, ‘Screaming’ mummy called Unknown Man ‘E’.

‘The Discovery of Hatshepsut’s ‘Throne’’, Kmt 13.1 (Spring 2002), 71-77.  Discussing the possible provenance of the enigmatic artefact (actually a funerary bed) and the objects associated with it.

‘The Mummy in the Nile’, Kmt 13.2 (Summer 2002), 74-79.  Amelia Edwards said that her travelling companions, the ‘MBs’ threw the mummy they had purchased into the Nile. Was it a pharaoh from the royal cache? If not, then who was it?

‘Examining the Mystery of the Niagara Falls Mummy. Was he from the Royal Mummies Cache? And is he Ramesses I?’, Kmt 17.4 (Winter 2006-07), 26-34.  The mummy returned to Egypt as Ramesses I cannot have come from the royal cache and cannot be that pharaoh; but who is he, and why are his arms crossed like a king?

‘Embalming Caches in the Valley of the Kings,’ Kmt 18.2 (Summer 2007), 46-53.  The recently discovered ‘tomb’ in the Valley of the Kings is in fact an embalming cache. The role of these caches is discussed as are the clues they may offer to the location of associated tombs.

‘Death in the Nile. The Birth of Egypt’s Last God’, Kmt 19.2 (Summer 2008), 74-82.  The visit to Egypt of the Roman emperor Hadrian was clouded with tragedy when his favourite, Antinous, drowned in the Nile. Hadrian is said to have been devastated by the loss, but the death was widely regarded as suspicious. Antinous died at just the right place and time to become a god.

‘The Fury of Amen. The Cursed Play in the Valley of the Queens’, Kmt 19.3 (Fall 2008), 76-83.  In 1909 a play was to be staged in the Valley of the Queens in which the heretic pharaoh, Akhenaten, would receive the pardon of the gods. However, the participants were beset with a series of disasters and ailments. Was it the curse of the god Amen?

‘The King is Dead. How Long Lived the King?’, Kmt 21.2 (Summer 2010), 38-44.  We have some idea of the likely lifespan of the pharaohs from historical records, but when anatomists examined X-rays of their mummies in the 1970s, they found them to have died much younger than expected. What was wrong? Were the ancient records unreliable? Did the pharaohs really all die young?

‘The Enigma of Kings Valley Tomb 58’, Kmt 21.3 (Fall 2010), 35-44.  How did Kings Valley tomb 58 come to contain gold foil naming Tutankhamun, and Ay as both a private individual and as king? Who is represented by the beautiful calcite shabti figure found on the tomb floor? This tomb has much to tell us about events in the Post Amarna period.

‘The Death of Two Kings on the Battlefield: Seqenenre Tao & Richard III’, Kmt 25.2 (Summer 2014), 58-72.   Recently there have been a number of attempts to challenge the idea that the horrific head wounds seen on the mummy of Pharaoh Seqenenre Ta’o were received in battle against the Hyksos. However, the recently discovered remains of King Richard III – who most definitely did die in battle – reveal a remarkably similar series of head injuries. The wounds of both monarchs can be matched to specific contemporary weapons.

‘Emile Brugsch and the Royal Mummies at Bulaq’ Kmt 26.1 (Spring 2015), 18-25.  An engraving from an art book of 1894 depicts Emile Brugsch photographing coffins and other items clearly identifiable as deriving from the TT320 Royal Cache tomb, discovered 1881.


Kmt 11.2 (Summer 2000), 3-4. Concerning Unknown Man E.

Kmt 13.2 (Summer 2002), 6-7. Concerning Hatshepsut’s ‘Throne’.

Kmt 13.4 (Winter 2003/4), 3-4. Concerning Unknown Man E.

Kmt 14.3 (Fall 2007), 4-5.     Refuting Fletcher’s identification of the ‘Younger Woman’ as Nefertiti.

Kmt 18.2 (Summer 2007), 6. Amarna head in Birmingham UK identified as a fake.

Kmt 18.3 (Fall 2007), 6-7.     Refuting Lacovara’s reassertion that the Niagara mummy is Ramesses I.

Note also that the article in Kmt 13.1, and the letter in Kmt 13.2, concerning Hatshepsut’s ‘throne’ are cited in Catherine H. Roehrig (Ed.) Hatshepsut From Queen to Pharaoh, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York (2005), 257-9.

ANCIENT EGYPT: The History, People and Culture of the Nile Valley. This UK publication first appeared mid 2000 and appears bi-monthly. Initially rather light-weight in content, it underwent a transformation under new editorship in mid 2004 and now carries articles of more scholarly import, though lacking footnotes.

‘Perilous descent: the Hall of the Mountain Kings’, Ancient Egypt 4.1 (July/August 2003), 30-35.  An account of a descent of the Agatha Christie path and my first entry into the TT320 royal cache tomb in 2003.

‘Look on my words, and despair!’ Ancient Egypt 5.1/25 (August/September 2005), 16-19.  Considering Shelley’s Ozymandias poem, one less well known by Horace Smith, and how the message may be applied to the current destruction of Egyptian monuments by rising groundwater.

‘So you want to know about… The Royal Mummies and the Valley of the Kings’, Ancient Egypt 5.4/28 (February/March 2005), 17-19.  Helps to identify the most useful and available books and web-sites.

‘The Thrice (or more) – Buried Queen’, Ancient Egypt 5.6/30 (June/July 2005), 13-15.  Concerning the mummy of queen Ahmose Nefertari which apparently ‘fell into putrefaction’…and then recovered!

‘The (Royal) Mummy Returns…but is he Ramesses I?’, Ancient Egypt 6.2/32 (Oct/Nov 2005), 42-48.  Showing that the mummy from the Niagara Falls Museum, returned by the Michael C. Carlos Museum to Egypt, cannot have come from the royal cache, and cannot be Ramesses I.

‘Strong Man – Wrong Tomb: the problem of Belzoni’s Sarcophagi’, Ancient Egypt 6.6/36 (June/July 2006), 22-30. Clearing up the confusion over which sarcophagi Belzoni removed when. In particular, the sarcophagus lid ‘given’ to him by Drovetti was not that of Ramesses III, and the base of the Ramesses III was not removed until later, by Athanasi.

‘Hadrian, Pharaoh of Egypt and the Birth of Egypt’s Last God, Antinous’, Ancient Egypt 9.4/52 (Feb/March 2009), 34-40.  The suspicious circumstances under which Antinous, favourite of the emperor Hadrian, drowned in the Nile and became a god.

Classic Review. ‘John Romer, Valley of the Kings, Ancient Egypt 12.4, Issue 70 (Feb/March 2012), 49.

‘The Curious Case of Howard Carter and the Lotus Head’, Ancient Egypt 15.5/89 (April/May 2015), 51-55.
Examining some of the discrepancies in the standard account of the discovery of the tomb of Tutankhamun, and in particular the clues given by the suspicious discovery of the ‘Lotus Head’ in the store-tomb KV4.

‘Egypt and Rome – Empires in Parallel?’, Ancient Egypt 16.1/91 (August/September 2015), 20-26.
Showing how the Egyptian and Roman empires, though widely separated in time, followed remarkably similar courses not only politically, but also in terms of military development and religious trends.


‘The Lost Papyrus of Djedptahiufankh’, Ancient Egypt 14.3, Issue 81 (December 2013/January 2014), 57-8.

‘Tours of Edward, Prince of Wales to Egypt’, Ancient Egypt 15.3, Issue 87 (December 2014/2015), 26.



‘The Burial of Hatshepsut’, The Heritage of Egypt Issue 1 (Jan. 2008), 3-12.

As many a six tombs are in some way associated with the burial of Hatshepsut. Two were her own – made when she was first queen/regent, and later when king – and others are places where it is thought she may have been transferred at some time following the clearance of her burial place.

‘Pharaoh Faseekh’, The Heritage of Egypt 1.3, Issue 3 (Sept 2008), 12-14.

The idea that royal mummies were passed through customs as ‘dried fish’ has some basis in truth, but story is, if anything, stranger that the one usually told.

‘Mystery Amarna Couple Identified?’, The Heritage of Egypt 2.3, Issue 6 (Sept. 2009), 15-17.

Who are the enigmatic Amarna-era royal couple depicted on Berlin stela 15000? The king is young and leans on a crutch, whilst the queen looks somewhat older…

‘The Tomb of Akhenaten and the Golden Ring of Nefertiti’, The Heritage of Egypt 3.1, Issue 7 (Jan. 2010), 11-31.

Who was buried in the royal tomb at Amarna, and was anyone buried in the other tombs nearby? Was the desecrated mummy of Akhenaten found outside the royal tomb? What is the significance of jewellery, including a golden ring of Nefertiti, found nearby?

EGYPTOLOGICAL On-line Egyptology journal.

The Significance of the Crossed-Arms Pose

Part 1. The Royal Pose in Death. Magazine Edition 8, 18th April 2013

Part 2. Osiris, The Osiris, and Osirides. Magazine Edition 9, 4th December 2013

The Journal of the Ancient Chronology Forum.  This was the publication of ISIS, an organisation devoted to the reconstruction of ancient chronologies. Owing to my knowledge of the TT320 Royal Cache tomb I was persuaded by David Rohl to write an overview of the discovery of the tomb and update such conclusions as could be drawn from the published data in the light of the recent re-clearance. This was the final issue of JACF as ISIS folded in 2006. My photographs here remain amongst the most useful published to date.

‘The Royal Cache Revisited’, Journal of the Ancient Chronology Forum 10 (2005), 9-25.

Widowinde: the Periodical of the English Companions.  This society exists to study the literature and culture of our Anglo-Saxon ancestors.

‘Saxon Brigands Destroyed’, Widowinde: thePeriodical of the English Companions. No. 115 (Autumn 1998).