Toshka: A Great Memory of Nubia is Coming Back to Light

Tuesday, March 1, 2016

Thanks to Simpson funds and Yale Egyptology, Toshka: A Great Memory of Nubia is Coming Back to Light. 

The Pennsylvania-Yale Expedition to Egypt worked in Nubia for three seasons, from 1961 to 1963 under the direction of the Yale professor of Egyptology William Kelly Simpson. In 1961 the expedition investigated Bronze Age Nubian evidence in Toskha East and Gebel Agg. In 1962 the work concentrated on the excavation of several Bronze Age Nubian cemeteries in the area of Toshka West. In charge of their excavation was Alan R. Schulman, at that time a graduate student in Egyptology from Penn University, and Bruce G. Trigger, a graduate student in Anthropology from Yale. Several monographs resulted from the expedition work, including the publication of the New Kingdom tombs of the Nubian princes of Miam at Toskha East, the most famous of whom is Heka-nefer, and the important rock inscriptions at Gebel Agg. Regrettably, much of the archaeological material from the Middle Nubian sites remained unpublished. In 2008, the Yale Peabody Museum of Natural History in collaboration with Yale Egyptology began a re-examination of the material from Toshka West (TW) Cemeteries B, C, and D, the site of Gebel Agg at Toshka East (TE), and miscellaneous sites. Excavation records and objects, now stored at West Campus facility are the core of the current work. Dr. Maria Carmela Gatto (at Yale Egyptology until 2013), is coordinating the project and the Nubian section working along with prof. Colleen Darnell (at Yale until June 2015), responsible for the Egyptian artefacts and Renee Leary (Yale Alumni) that is doing a fundamental work of review, description and data base entries for each single pieces of this huge amount of archaeological objects. Alberto Urcia (Yale Egyptology specialist in digital archaeology) is curating the graphic documentation, integrating the archive with new high-resolution photographs (in collaboration with YDC2 and Dept of Anthropology at West Campus), producing maps and managing the contents for the outfit of the upcoming publication. Thanks to this and the precious contribution of many other researcher and specialists that will be properly featured in the official presentation, it will be finally possible to discover this amazing collection and its background, looking back on the history of the Penn-Yale Expedition and its participation to the UNESCO Campaign for the safeguard of this African region and his so endangered culture.