Monday, June 15, 2009

The anonymous Egyptologist

Al Ahram Weekly (Zahi Hawass)

Hawass is again defending his position using his Al Ahram Weekly column:

When we announced our discoveries at the temple site of Taposiris Magna near Alexandria four weeks ago, an Egyptologist who chose to remain anonymous began to criticise our work. He said that I was always making sensationalised announcements of my discoveries. I do not understand the reasoning behind his statement, but I suspect that he might be envious.

Martinez and I simply stated that we were currently searching for the tomb of Cleopatra and Mark Antony. We never claimed to have discovered the royal tomb. We informed the media of the results of our ongoing work of the past three years, such as finding an alabaster head of Cleopatra, the headless statue of a king, coins stamped with the face of a queen, a stone mask that could possibly represent the Roman leader, Mark Antony, and a temple foundation deposit proving that the temple was constructed during the reign of Ptolemy IV. We also announced the discoveries that we made as we began excavating tombs outside the temple.

Critics like this anonymous Egyptologist have implied that the repeated media announcements lack any significant new information, making it difficult for the academic community to take the excavation seriously. I believe that in their resentment, these critics are blinded as to what is old and what is new information. Perhaps it is difficult for them to know the difference.

See the above page for the full story.

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