Belgian expansionism and the making of Egyptology, 1830-1952

In Belgium, Egyptology emerged later than elsewhere in Europe, but once under steam, it went through a rapid growth in the course of the first half of the 20th century. In the 1930s Brussels was occasionally even referred to as ‘the capital of Egyptology’.

Heliopolis.  © Le Soir Illustré, 15 Mar 1930.
"Frans van Kuyck", Book of Gold City of Antwerp, Part 1 1866-1892, p. 191. © FelixArchief.
"Ferdinand de Lesseps", Book of Gold City of Antwerp, Part 1 1866-1892, p. 144. © FelixArchief.
The Albert Eid & Co. antiquities store in Cairo. © Nag Hammadi Archive, Claremont Graduate University. Institute for Antiquity and Christianity, School of Religion.
Jean Capart - Severin Fresque © KMKG - MRAH
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News and activities

Our former colleague and archivist Noortje Lambrichts has published an account (in Dutch) of her experiences at Pyramids & Progress in the first issue of 2020 of META, the journal of the Flemish Association for Library, Archive and Documentation (Vlaamse Vereniging voor Bibliotheek, Archief & ...
18 May 2020
Today marks the second day of the 'responsible deconfinement' in Belgium, something Belgian physician in Alexandria, Pierre Dutrieux (1848-1889) would probably have agreed with. With this blog Gert Huskens and dr. Jan Vandersmissen want to introduce this remarkable and somewhat forgotten historical ...

5 May 2020
Gert Huskens, one of Pyramids & Progress's PhD students, has published a review in the latest issue of Contemporanea about his research on Belgian diplomatic presence in Egypt. To read the full article click on this link: Photo: © ...

28 Mar 2020
Last week, an interview with our P&P-member Jean-Michel Bruffaerts was featured in Le Soir. Re-read it over here ! Photo credit: Twitter, Isabelle Bastaits (@isabastaits).

22 Mar 2020
Our colleague Jean-Michel Bruffaerts has recently published an new article about Jean Capart called 'The origins of museum storytelling: Jean Capart and the dissemination of ancient Egypt' in the Il Capitale Culturale: Studies on the Value of Cultural Heritage. You can download the article (in ...

3 Mar 2020
During the Hulencourt Festival our colleague Jean-Michel Bruffaerts will give a dinner-lecture on 12 March 2020 If you want to please both your intellectual as well as your gastronomic desires, this is the event you're looking for!

lecture | conference
25 Feb 2020
On 19 February 2020 Marleen De Meyer was invited to speak at the American University in Cairo, Rare Books and Special Collections Library, about "Jean Capart, a Belgian Egyptologist in the USA during the interwar years".

lecture | conference
20 Feb 2020
Gustave Hagemans’s passion for art and antiques is still visible in the showcases of the Art and History Museum of the Cinquantenaire. When he sold his entire collection to the Belgian State in 1861, there were around 1.500 pieces, spanning from classical Antiquity to the Renaissance, which were ...

4 Feb 2020
Nouveau regard sur un masque de momie du Musée d’Art & d’Histoire (E.6884) On Sunday February 9, 2020, P&P-member dr. Dorian Vanhulle will give a lecture (in French) at the Art & History Museum (Brussels). Location Auditorium Art & History Museum Cinquantenaire park 10 - 1000 Brussels Abstract (in ...

lecture | conference
27 Jan 2020
A fantastic discovery has recently been made by the Egyptian-German archaeological mission led by Hourig Sourouzian at Kom Al-Hettan. A granodiorite colossus of Horus, of approximately 1,85 m high, has been unearthed in the hypostyle hall of Amenhotep III’s Temple of Millions of Years, on the west ...

2 Jan 2020
Leopold II, the second king of the Belgian (1835-1909, r. 1865-1909), travelled twice in Egypt while he was still Prince and Duke of Brabant: once between January 1854 and March 1855, then between December 1862 and February 1863. From these trips and through the contacts he made there, he ...

16 Dec 2019
On Wednesday December 11, 2019, P&P-member dr. Marleen De Meyer will give a lecture (in Dutch) at KU Leuven. This event is organised by Ex Oriente Lux Leuven and Egyptologica Vlaanderen. This lecture will be repeated in Gent on December 12 at Atheneum Wispelberg, Wispelbergstraat 1, 9000 Gent. For ...

lecture | conference
3 Dec 2019
Location KU Leuven, Mgr. Sencie-Instituut MSI 00.28, Erasmusplein 2, 3000 Leuven Abstract Jaroslav Černý, the modern ‘scribe of Deir el-Medina’, introduced Egyptology to the daily life of ancient Egyptians, and the ancient Egyptian daily life to the general public. But his career and Egyptological ...

lecture | conference
14 Nov 2019
On Monday November 11, 2019, P&P organises the symposium "The History of Egyptology in the Low Countries" at the Netherlands-Flemish Institute in Cairo, Egypt. Program 14.00h. Dr. Martijn Eickhoff (NIOD; Bissing Link Project) ‘Aus dem Volksleben heraus’. The short career of Friedrich Wilhelm ...

lecture | conference
29 Oct 2019
On Sunday November 10, 2019, 18h, P&P-member dr. Harco Willems will give the annual Cleveringa lecture at the Netherlands-Flemish Institute in Cairo, Egypt. The title of his lecture will be The Second Congress of Orientalists in London (1874). Or: the early development of Egyptology in geopolitical ...
29 Oct 2019