Here’s a review of a new book on ancient Egyptian goldsmithing.
Egyptian Gold Jewellery.
With a catalogue of the collection of gold objects in the Egyptian
Department of the National Museum of Antiquities in Leiden
By Marielle Bulsink
By means of technical examination of the gold objects now part of the
renowned and outstanding Egyptian collection of the National Museum
of Antiquities in Leiden, this book gives a unique and innovatory
insight in the work of the ancient Egyptian goldsmith.
In 1922 the world came face to face with a young pharaoh: in that
year the tomb of Tutankhamun was discovered and his breathtaking gold
mask became known to everybody. Ancient Egyptian gold is known to all
of us. But what was the significance of gold in Ancient Egyptian
society? Where was it found and how was it won? And where did the
Ancient Egyptian goldsmith work and what techniques did he master?
The first part of this book answers the questions mentioned above.
The second part is a catalogue of gold objects which are part of the
renowned and outstanding collection of the Egyptian Department of
the National Museum of Antiquities in Leiden. By means of a
technical examination of these objects, this book gives a unique and
innovatory insight in the work of the ancient Egyptian goldsmith,
who was able to accomplish true work of art though working in hot
and basic circumstances. ?
Mari’lle Bulsink (1968) studied archaeology and Egyptology at Leiden
University. In 1992 she finished her studies, writing a thesis on
the technical research of the gold objects in the collection of the
Egyptian Department of the National Museum of Antiquities in Leiden.
In the following years this study was prepared for publishing.
During this process she was guest researcher at the museum and took
a course in metalworking under the guidance of a goldsmith to
experience firsthand the ins and outs of the trade. Currently she is
doing voluntary work at the National Museum of Antiquities in Leiden.