Bloomsbury Summer School
Fascinated by ancient civilisations?
We offer anyone with any level of knowledge, inspiring short courses on ancient Egypt and other areas of the ancient world.
BSS in Egypt archive: 2009 – 2022
10th November 2019
BSS in Egypt 2019
BSS group at the entrance to Senenmut’s tomb (usually closed to visitors). A highlight of this year’s BSS in Egypt was Bernadette Brady’s explanation of the astronomical ceiling in this tomb.
Ancient Egyptian Astronomy
Course Director: Dr Bernadette Brady
This was a fantastic new course taught in Luxor by cultural astronomer, Dr Bernadette Brady, with daily lectures and related visits to wonderful ancient sites, including 3 ‘special openings’ of sites usually closed to visitors (Amenhotep III’s temple remains at Kom el-Hettan, the tomb of Senenmut (TT353) and the tomb of Montuemhat (TT34), as well as a visit to the tomb of Seti I in the Valley of the Kings on a special ticket. Combining lectures in the historic Winter Palace Hotel and a carefully-considered programme of site visits in and near Luxor, we brought you our first ever course on Ancient Egyptian Astronomy. Bloomsbury Summer School has a long-held reputation for providing popular short courses at UCL in London, and for the past ten years at different locations in Egypt. The Ancient Egyptians were keen sky observers and mythologised naked-eye astronomy, using it to inform their stellar theology, and provide them with the tools for precision geometry. This exciting new course explored the Ancient Egyptian blend of sky theology, mythology, stars and planets.
16th November 2018
BSS in Egypt 2018
Bill Manley and Amr El Sharqawy talk to BSS students in front of the tomb of Ankhtify at Mo’alla
An Expedition to Read Hieroglyphs
Course Director: Dr Bill Manley
This was a NEW course taught in Luxor by the brilliant hieroglyphs teacher and BSS favourite, Dr Bill Manley, with daily classes and hieroglyphs-reading at fascinating ancient sites, including 5 ‘special openings’ of sites usually closed to visitors. Combining classes in the historic Winter Palace Hotel and site visits in and near Luxor, we brought you our first hieroglyphs course taught in Egypt. Bloomsbury Summer School has a long-held reputation for providing acclaimed hieroglyphs courses at UCL in London. Bill Manley has been teaching our summer courses for the past 25 years, and it was wonderful that he agreed to teach a Reading Hieroglyphs course in Egypt, focussing on temple and tomb inscriptions, in the sacred landscape of Ancient Thebes. During this course students read Hatshepsut’s Karnak Obelisk Inscription; the Ahmose, son of Abana tomb biography inscription at El Kab; and Coptic inscriptions in the Temple of Hathor at Deir el-Medina.
15th December 2017
BSS in Egypt 2017
Our BSS in Egypt 2017 group with Dr Hourig Sourouzian and Dr Peter Lacovara in front of the Colossi of Memnon
In the Realm of the Sun King: Thebes in the reign of Amenhotep III
Course Director: Dr Peter Lacovara
This was a NEW course taught in Luxor by the Co-Director of excavations at Amenhotep III’s palace-city at Malqata, with daily lectures and exploration of relevant ancient sites, including 5 ‘special openings’ of sites usually closed to visitors. 24 BSS students enjoyed Dr Peter Lacovara’s course entitled In the Realm of the Sun King: Thebes in the reign of Amenhotep III. This series of ten lectures was coupled with relevant site visits including special access to Amenhotep III’s temple remains at Kom el-Hetan, his palace-city remains at Malqata,Tombs of Nobles dating to the reign of Amenhotep III: Djeserkareseneb (TT38) and Horemheb (TT78), and the Tomb of Amenhotep III in the Western Valley. A huge thank you to Dr Hourig Sourizian for a fabulous guided tour of Kom El-Hetan. And a massive thank you to Dr Peter Lacovara for his lectures and tour of Malqata, to Amr El Sharqawy for his extremely knowledgeable guided tours, and to Lee Young and Galal Alsenusy of Egypt Archaeological Tours for their brilliant organisation of this course/tour.
22nd November 2016
BSS in Egypt 2016
Dr Robert Morkot talking to us at Amada Temple
Nubia: a journey through a drowned land
Course Director: Dr Robert Morkot
This was a new course taught in Aswan and on the shores of Lake Nasser by Dr Robert Morkot, one of THE experts on Nubia, and author of The Black Pharaohs, Egypt's Nubian Rulers and Nubia: a journey through a drowned land. Robert’s daily lectures were complemented by daily exploration of relevant ancient sites. We enjoyed a series of ten excellent lectures on the complex relationship between Egypt and Nubia in ancient times, and on the writings by travellers to Nubia up until the 20th Century. In addition to all the sites we had planned to visit, we were able to add in a bonus visit to Gebel el-Silsila where we had this complicated site explained to us by Gebel el-Silsila Project Directors Dr Maria Nilsson and John Ward. All our site visits were enhanced by our extremely knowledgeable guide, Ahmed El Saghir. And Galal Alsenusy was, as ever, a brilliant tour coordinator. A big thank you to Egypt Archaeological Tours, and all responsible for making this course such a success.
24th November 2015
BSS in Egypt 2015
Stephen Harvey explaining a 19th Dynasty inscription at Kanais, one of our ‘special openings’ for BSS in Egypt 2015
The Mighty Ramessides: Egypt’s Nineteenth Dynasty in Focus
Course Director: Dr Stephen Harvey
This excellent series of lectures by Dr Stephen Harvey on the early Ramesside Period was complemented by a range of fascinating site visits, including 'special openings' of Seti I's temple at Kanais, Ramesses II's portal temple at Kom el-Sultan, Abydos, and the extraordinary tombs of Seti I, Ramesses II, Ramesses II's sons (KV5) and Nefertari. Another huge thank you to Dr Stephen Harvey for a brilliant course, Enass Salah for all her wonderful guiding at the sites, and Galal Alsenusy and Lee Young of Egypt Archaeological Tours for all they did to make this course/tour such a success.
26th October 2014
BSS in Egypt 2014
Dr Stephen Harvey
Pyramids of Egypt
Course Director: Dr Stephen Harvey
Following the sell-out success of Stephen Harvey’s BSS in Egypt 2012 course on Abydos, we were thrilled to bring you a new course taught in Giza and the Faiyum with daily lectures and exploration of relevant ancient sites.
This fantastic course on Pyramids was accompanied by a comprehensive itinerary of visits to Old and Middle Kingdom pyramids, many of which were opened specially for the group.
A huge thank you to Dr Stephen Harvey for a brilliant course, Enass Salah for all her wonderful guiding at the sites, and Galal Alsenusy and Lee Young of Egypt Archaeological Tours for all they did to make the course/tour run so smoothly.
12th February 2013
BSS in Egypt 2013
John Romer leads intrepid BSS in Egypt 2010 group from Deir el-Medina to the Valley of the Kings
A History of Thebes
Course Director: John Romer
Following the success of John Romer’s 2010 BSS in Egypt course, we were excited to be able to follow it up with another stimulating course taught by John in Luxor with daily lectures and exploration of ancient sites. John gave ten fascinating and thought-provoking lectures on the region of Egypt he knows so well. He explained the lesser-known features of the Theban landscape. We visited many ancient sites including some usually closed to visitors, such as Medamud, Malqata, the temple of Montuhotep at Deir el-Bahri and the tomb of Antefoker/Senet (TT60).
19th December 2012
BSS in Egypt 2012
Dr Stephen Harvey
Abydos and Beyond: a sacred landscape Course
Director: Dr Stephen Harvey with additional lectures by Bryan Kraemer
This was another new and exciting course taught in Egypt with daily exploration of rarely-visited ancient sites, including nine sites usually closed to visitors. This course was directed by Stephen Harvey, an archaeologist at Abydos since 1988. It was a unique opportunity to hear this vibrant Egyptologist give a week of lectures in the heart of the sacred landscape he was talking about. BSS would like to thank Egypt Everywhere, in particular Galal Alsenusy, our guide Yusuf Ramsis, and Stephen Harvey and Bryan Kraemer for a brilliant course/tour.
29th December 2011
BSS in Egypt 2011
Dr Robert Morkot
Abu: Gateway to Nubia
Course Director: Dr Robert Morkot
Another exciting and innovative course taught in Aswan, and the comprehensive exploration of the fascinating archaeological sites of Aswan. This course was taught by Dr Robert Morkot, expert on Nubia and author of The Black Pharaohs, Egypt's Nubian Rulers. It was a unique opportunity to hear this distinguished Egyptologist give a week of lectures in Aswan, and to hear him share his insights on site visits. The Course Coordinator, accompanying the group throughout was BSS Deputy Director Lucia Gahlin. BSS would like to thank Sinusret Travel, our guide Galal Alsenusy, and Robert Morkot for all they did to make this course such a success.
BSS in Egypt 2010
BSS students following in the footsteps of the Deir el-Medina workmen
This is how one lives at Thebes! The life and works of the Theban royal tomb makers
Course Director:John Romer
32 BSS students enjoyed a wonderful week in Luxor attending 10 lectures by John Romer on Deir el-Medina and the Valley of the Kings, and visiting a great selection of archaeological sites including a special opening of the tomb of Seti I in the Valley of the Kings. BSS would like to thank John for his entertaining and thought-provoking lectures, and comments at the sites; our wonderful Egyptian guide Hani Al Bagoury; and Margaret Davies and Galal Alsinusy of Sinusret Travel for all their organisation and smooth-running arrangements.
The course was directed by John Romer, a renowned expert on Deir el-Medina and the Valley of the Kings, with over 40 years experience working in Luxor. This was a unique opportunity to hear this entertaining and knowledgeable Egyptologist give a week of lectures in the heart of Luxor. The Course Coordinator, accompanying the group throughout, was Lucia Gahlin, BSS Deputy Director and Egyptologist.
BSS in Egypt 2009
Exploring Amarna: Akhenaten's Abandoned City
Course Director: Professor Barry Kemp
In 2009 we celebrated the launch of 'BSS in Egypt', an exciting and innovative course taught in Egypt, with daily visits to fascinating and less-visited ancient sites.
This course was directed by Professor Barry Kemp, a renowned Egyptologist and Director of excavations at the site since 1977. This was a unique opportunity to hear Professor Kemp give a week of lectures in addition to guided tours of Tell el-Amarna. The Course Co-ordinator, accompanying the group throughout, was Lucia Gahlin, BSS Deputy Director and Egyptologist.
Helen Lowell's photo shows Barry Kemp on site at Amarna holding a mudbrick stamped with the hieroglyphs: 'Office of Pharaoh's Correspondence'.