Ancient Faces: Mummy Portraits from Roman Egypt by Susan Walker, John Taylor, Paul Roberts, M. L. Bierbrier |, Paperback | Barnes & Noble
Ancient Faces: Mummy Portraits from Roman Egypt

Ancient Faces: Mummy Portraits from Roman Egypt

by Susan Walker, John Taylor, Paul Roberts, M. L. Bierbrier
     
 

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From the first major discoveries a century ago, the painted portraits of Roman Egypt were a revelation to scholars and the public alike, and the recent finding of a new cache of these gilded images, which made national headlines, have only heightened their mystery and appeal. Published to coincide with a new major exhibition of these portraits, Ancient Faces

Overview

From the first major discoveries a century ago, the painted portraits of Roman Egypt were a revelation to scholars and the public alike, and the recent finding of a new cache of these gilded images, which made national headlines, have only heightened their mystery and appeal. Published to coincide with a new major exhibition of these portraits, Ancient Faces is the most comprehensive, up-to-date survey of these astonishing works of art.

Dating from the later period of Roman rule in Egypt, shortly before the birth of Christ, the painted mummy portraits are among the most remarkable products of the ancient world, a fusion of the traditions of pharonic Egypt and the Classical world. They are historical and cultural objects of outstanding importance and beauty, superb works of art that represent some of the earliest known examples of life-like portraiture. Though the subjects of the portraits believed in the traditional Egyptian cults, which offered them a firm prospect of life after death, they also wished to be commemorated in the Roman manner, with their fashion of dress and adornment signaling their status in life. Despite their ancient history, these portraits speak to the modern eye with a beauty and intensity that would be lost to portraiture until the Renaissance.

Editorial Reviews

Library Journal
When Rome conquered Egypt, two great cultures combined, taking some of the best qualities of each to form an amalgam. The Egyptian belief in the afterlife held strong appeal, but so did the Roman practice of portraiture. As a result, portrait painting was added to traditional Egyptian funerary practices to produce the unique and haunting "mummy portraits," some of the earliest portraits still in existence. The first "ancient faces" exhibit appeared at the British Museum in 1997. When the Metropolitan Museum of Art decided to do its own version, it expanded on the original core group of portraits by adding material from European and North American collections. Walker, deputy keeper of Greek and Roman Antiquities at the British Museum, edited the catalog for both shows. Consequently, they are very similar in most respects; five of the seven essays in this volume appeared first in the British catalog. Recommended for academic and larger public libraries not owning the British catalog.--Mary Morgan Smith, Northland P.L., Pittsburgh Copyright 2000 Cahners Business Information.\

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780714109893
Publisher:
British Museum Press
Publication date:
01/01/1997
Series:
A Catalogue of Roman Portraits in the British Museum, #4
Pages:
224
Product dimensions:
8.66(w) x 11.02(h) x (d)

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