Bloomsbury Summer School (text)

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.

2023 SPRING AND SUMMER COURSES

Printed course programme cover

To receive a paper copy, email your postal address to: bloomsbury@egyptology-uk.com

Spring course list

Saturday 25 March (online only)
A TASTE OF HIEROGLYPHS

Sunday 26 March (online only)
A TASTE OF DEMOTIC

Saturday 1 to Sunday 2 April (online only)
“BUT HIS OWN MIND GUIDED HIM”: VISUAL ART AND ARTISTIC PRACTICE IN ANCIENT EGYPT

Saturdays and Sundays 1 - 2 and 8 - 9 April (online only)
EGYPT REINVENTED: DISCOVERING GRAECO-ROMAN EGYPT

Summer course list

Monday 3 to Friday 7 July (in person and online)
HIERATIC: READING HORUS AND SETH, LOVE POEMS, AND MORE

Monday 3 to Friday 7 July (in person and online)
VISUAL CULTURE OF THE ANCIENT AMERICAS: FROM ROCK ART TO QUIPUS AND CODICES

Monday 10 to Friday 14 July (in person only)
READING HIEROGLYPHS: 'ALL THAT IS WRITTEN IN THIS BOOK'

Monday 10 to Friday 14 July (in person only)
HIEROGLYPHS: THE NEXT STEP

Monday 17 to Friday 21 July (in person and online)
HATSHEPSUT AND SENENMUT: POWER AND PERSONALITY IN EGYPT’S 18TH DYNASTY

Monday 17 to Friday 21 July (in person and online)
ANCIENT PERSIA AND THE HEBREW BIBLE

Monday 17 to Friday 21 July (in person and online)
READING COPTIC: APOCRYPHA AND APOCRYPHAL

Monday 24 to Friday 28 July (online only)
READING HIEROGLYPHS: 'ALL THAT IS WRITTEN IN THIS BOOK'


Saturday 25 March 2023


A TASTE OF HIEROGLYPHS

Course Director: Dr Bill Manley

This is a 1-day course to be held online via Zoom and will be available on video recording.

For those of you intrigued by learning how to read hieroglyphs and perhaps wondering whether to take the plunge, this 1-day course will show you the basics behind reading ancient Egyptian and also give you a taste of the way we do things at Bloomsbury Summer School.

A TASTE OF HIEROGLYPHS assumes you have no prior experience in the subject but, through a series of presentations and reading sessions, we will show you how to read some pharaonic monuments on display in world-famous museums by the end of the day.

Course Director info
Online Course Fee: £30 per person
Recommended reading

It would be a good idea on the day (but not essential) to have with you a copy of:
Collier, M. and Manley, B. (ideally the 2003 revised edition but the earlier edition is fine) How to Read Egyptian Hieroglyphs. British Museum Press.


If you are interested to go on to take our 1-week course HIEROGLYPHS FOR BEGINNERS (this ran in 2022 and is available on video recording here) or to continue with our second stage course 'Hieroglyphs: The Next Step' (which will be held in person in July), then you should be aware that this book is essential for both those courses.


Sunday 26 March 2023


A TASTE OF DEMOTIC

Course Director: Dr Franziska Naether (University of Leipzig)

This is a 1-day course to be held online via Zoom and will be available on video recording.

Come delve into the Demotic script! This 1-day course offers a brief introduction to this cursive form of Egyptian writing, starting with the Rosetta Stone. For roughly 1200 years (between the 7th century BCE and 5th century CE), Demotic was used to write a late phase of the Egyptian language often referred to as “the language of Cleopatra”. Although the script is challenging to read, Franziska will take you through step by step. Your efforts will be rewarded with glimpses into daily life, from temple documents and shopping lists to literary and magical texts. You will become familiar with the alphabetic signs, basic grammar, and syntax, and soon be reading simple but important words. The day will conclude with a reading of Demotic on Egyptian papyri.

Note: A TASTE OF DEMOTIC assumes you have no prior experience in the subject. However, the script is challenging and you will glean more from the class if you have a basic familiarity with Egyptian hieroglyphs. We recommend our 'Taste Of Hieroglyphs' course (running on 25 March). Should you have any questions about your knowledge level, contact the Course Director by email (naether@uni-leipzig.de) to discuss your case.

Course Director info
Online Course Fee: £30 per person
Recommended reading

Johnson, J. H. (2000, third edition) Thus Wrote ‘Onchsheshonqy: An introductory grammar of Demotic. Chicago.
https://oi.uchicago.edu/research/publications/saoc/saoc-45-thus-wrote-onchsheshonqy-introductory-grammar-demotic
This is an Open Access / freely downloadable publication. Ensure you have downloaded the PDF prior to the start of class.


Further reading

Johnson, J. H. (2004) The Demotic Verbal System.
https://oi.uchicago.edu/research/publications/saoc/saoc-38-demotic-verbal-system

Johnson, J. H. (ed.) (2001) The Demotic Dictionary of the Oriental Institute of the University of Chicago.
Files of individual letters / signs available at: https://oi.uchicago.edu/research/publications/demotic-dictionary-oriental-institute-university-chicago

Depauw, M. (1997) A Companion to Demotic Studies. Fondation égyptologique reine Elisabeth.
PDF: http://sites.dlib.nyu.edu/viewer/books/isaw_pbrx000028/1


Saturday 1 to Sunday 2 April


“BUT HIS OWN MIND GUIDED HIM”: VISUAL ART AND ARTISTIC PRACTICE IN ANCIENT EGYPT

Course Director: Dr Elizabeth Frood (University of Oxford)

This is a 2-day course to be held online via Zoom and will be available on video recording.

The quotation in the course title comes from an artist’s signature in a 20th dynasty tomb in Egypt’s south. It speaks to one of the tensions examined in this short course, that between tradition and innovation, as well as issues relating to the experience of artists and personal inspiration. Your Course Director will explore with you different themes in Egyptian visual art, encompassing, for example, the relationships of writing and art, gender and representation, and graffiti art. Richly illustrated lectures will introduce you to key issues and material, while discussion sessions will be designed to allow you to delve deeper into sources and explore their implications.

Course Director info
Online Course Fee: £110 per person
Recommended reading

Bahrani, Z. (2014) The Infinite Image: Art, time and the aesthetic dimension in antiquity. Reaktion Books.

Nyord, R. (2020) Seeing Perfection: Ancient Egyptian images beyond representation. Cambridge University Press.
PDF: www.academia.edu/43906902/2020_Seeing_Perfection_Ancient_Egyptian_Images_beyond_Representation.

Riggs, C.(2014) Ancient Egyptian Art and Architecture: A very short introduction. Reaktion Books.



Saturdays and Sundays 1 – 2 and 8 – 9 April


EGYPT REINVENTED: DISCOVERING GRAECO-ROMAN EGYPT

Course Director: Dr Luigi Prada (Uppsala University)

This is a 4-day course to be held online via Zoom and will be available on video recording.

It is often through the rich heritage of the Graeco–Roman Period that many of us become captivated by Egypt’s ancient civilisation: think of the best-preserved temples, such as those at Edfu or Philae, or great historical figures, such as Alexander the Great or Cleopatra. Yet, many of us often know relatively little about this fascinating period. This course—which is intended for both students of ancient Egypt and of the classical world—offers a full introduction to this period. Join Luigi in exploring the manifold identities and aspects of Greco-Roman Egypt, spanning its archaeology, art history, textual culture, religion, and much more. You will discover its complex reality, where century-old Egyptian traditions and ways of life were reinvented through contact with the civilisations of the Greeks and Romans.

Course Director info
Online Course Fee: £220 per person
Recommended reading

Bagnall, R. S. and Rathbone, D. W. (2004) Egypt from Alexander to the Copts: An archaeological and historical guide. British Museum Press.

Bowman, A. K. (1986 and following re-editions) Egypt After the Pharaohs: 332 BC–AD 642: From Alexander to the Arab Conquest. British Museum Press.

Fluck, C., Helmecke, G., and O’Connell, E. R. (eds) (2015) Egypt: Faith after the Pharaohs. British Museum Press.

Manning, J. G. (2010) The Last Pharaohs: Egypt under the Ptolemies, 305–30 BC. Princeton University Press.

Parsons, P. (2007) The City of the Sharp-nosed Fish: Greek lives in Roman Egypt. Weidenfeld and Nicolson.

Prada, L. (2016) Questions of Identity: A multicultural and multilingual Egypt. In Picchi, D. and Giovetti, P. (eds) Egypt: Millenary splendour(pp 412-419). Skira.
PDF: https://www.academia.edu/27624265/Questions_of_Identity_A_Multicultural_and_Multilingual_Egypt

Riggs, C. (ed.) (2012) The Oxford Handbook of Roman Egypt. Oxford University Press.


Monday 3 to Friday 7 July


HIERATIC: READING HORUS AND SETH, LOVE POEMS, AND MORE

Course Director: Dr Luigi Prada (Uppsala University)

This is a 5-day course to be held in person, livestreamed via Zoom, and will be available on video recording.

Following the success of last year’s introduction to Hieratic, Luigi is offering a new class this summer, giving students the opportunity to read more texts in their hieratic original, the cursive script of pharaonic Egypt. We will read together texts in both Middle and Late Egyptian, beginning with one of Ancient Egypt’s literary masterpieces, ‘The Contendings of Horus and Seth’. Other readings will include New Kingdom love poems, and a selection of other texts. The course includes initial refreshers to reading hieratic and Late Egyptian, and can be attended also by students who did not follow the previous course. Participants are expected to have knowledge—minimum one year’s study—of hieroglyphic Middle Egyptian. Sessions to observe original artefacts at the British Museum and Petrie Museum will also be included.

Course Director info
In Person Course Fee: £350 per person
Online Course Fee: £270 per person
Recommended reading

This course is based on handouts specially prepared for BSS. The Course Director will provide the necessary teaching material.

NB: The standard reference for hieratic signs is:

Möller, G. (1909–1936) Hieratische Paläographie. Bd. I–IV. Osnabrück.

PDF: http://ancientworldonline.blogspot.com/2014/02/mollers-hieratische-palaographie-online.html


Monday 3 to Friday 7 July


VISUAL CULTURE OF THE ANCIENT AMERICAS: FROM ROCK ART TO QUIPUS AND CODICES

Course Director: Dr Elizabeth Baquedano (University College London)

This is a 5-day course to be held in person, livestreamed via Zoom, and will be available on video recording.

This course looks at the indigenous cultures of the Americas through the lens of visual culture from 500 BCE to the 16th century CE and beyond. Join us for a fascinating journey through the rich artefactual evidence, including materials of manufacture, stylistic changes, and elaborate iconography and symbolism. Examine with Elizabeth multimedia objects that combine different materials and different techniques and the reasons behind these artistic choices and the multiplicity of ideas they signified. This course will be approached from an array of disciplines: archaeology, archeoastronomy, art, and anthropology. Together with your Course Director and special guest lecturers, you will enjoy learning about the wealth of visual culture from North America, Mesoamerica, and South America.

Course Director info
In Person Course Fee: £350 per person
Online Course Fee: £270 per person
Recommended reading


Forthcoming.


Monday 10 to Friday 14 July (in person)

Monday 24 to Friday 28 July (online only)


READING HIEROGLYPHS: 'ALL THAT IS WRITTEN IN THIS BOOK'

Course Co-Directors: Dr José-Ramón Pérez-Accino (Uppsala University) and Dr Bill Manley

This is a 5-day course to be held in person on 10 - 15 July and online via Zoom on 24 - 28 July, and will be available on video recording.

As usual we are bringing you a brand new course for those of you who love to experience the culture of pharaonic Egypt first hand by reading the ancient texts. This time, to celebrate the publication of Bill’s new book, we will be exploring the language and ideas of some of the earliest literature that has come down to us, including the wisdom of The Loyalist Teaching and The Teaching of Kagemni.

Happily, this year’s Reading Hieroglyphs course makes a return to our London classrooms. In response to ever-increasing demand for “Reading Hieroglyphs”, however, we are going to run the same course online, two weeks later on 24–28 July. The content will be the same for each iteration of the course.

Our READING HIEROGLYPHS courses assume you already have a good reading knowledge of Egyptian hieroglyphic texts. Normally we expect you to have taken both of the BSS courses HIEROGLYPHS FOR BEGINNERS (first stage) and HIEROGLYPHS: THE NEXT STEP (second stage) beforehand. As a rule of thumb, before you come along you should be comfortable reading all of the texts in How to Read Egyptian Hieroglyphs (see Recommended reading). Nevertheless, do not worry about the intensity of this course: throughout the week there will be plenty of time for your own work and for questions and answers with your tutors.

Course Director info Course Director info
In Person Course Fee: £350 per person
Online Course Fee: £270 per person
Recommended reading

Collier, M. and Manley, B. (2003) How to Read Egyptian Hieroglyphs (revised edition). British Museum Press.

This is the required course book, and you must bring a copy to each class (the first or second edition is equally useful.) The following book is not essential but you may find it helpful to bring a copy with you, if you happen to have one.

Faulkner, R. O. (1962) A Concise Dictionary of Middle Egyptian. Griffith Institute.


Monday 10 to Friday 14 July


HIEROGLYPHS: THE NEXT STEP

Course Co-Directors: Dr José-Ramón Pérez-Accino (Uppsala University) and Dr Bill Manley

This is a 5-day course to be held in person only.

We are delighted once again to offer our second-stage course in Egyptian hieroglyphs. José-Ramón and Bill aim to show you The Next Step, which builds on the knowledge and skills you acquired on the course Hieroglyphs for Beginners. In a series of practical sessions, you will be introduced to increasingly elaborate monuments, including monuments made for kings as well as officials. In this way, you will develop a more sophisticated appreciation of hieroglyphic writing and the language, including ways of talking about the king and the gods; ways of talking about the past, present, and future; and how to make negative statements. Through the week you will enrich your understanding of different kinds of monuments and expand your knowledge of Middle Egyptian.

Please note: You need not have taken the course Hieroglyphs for Beginners at BSS beforehand, but THE NEXT STEP assumes you do have some experience in reading Egyptian hieroglyphic inscriptions. As a general guide, you should already be able to read a basic offering-formula, and cope with the language of the monuments on pages 46 and 48 of the course book. That said, do not worry about the intensity of the course: there will be plenty of time for supervised reading and for contact with your tutor.

Course Director info Course Director info
In Person Course Fee: £350 per person
Recommended reading

Collier, M. and Manley, B. (2003) How to Read Egyptian Hieroglyphs (revised edition). British Museum Press.

This is the required course book, and you must bring a copy to each class (the first or second edition is equally useful.)


Monday 17 to Friday 21 July


HATSHEPSUT AND SENENMUT: POWER AND PERSONALITY IN EGYPT’S 18TH DYNASTY

Course Director: Dr Campbell Price (University of Manchester)

This is a 5-day course to be held in person, livestreamed via Zoom, and will be available on video recording.

Hatshepsut's reign of two decades in the 15th century BCE was in some ways the most unconventional in Pharaonic history. Her high official Senenmut played an important role in presenting her kingship, while he and her other officials commemorated themselves in both traditional and innovative ways. Join Campbell to explore his new research on the interaction of sculpture, sacred landscapes, and the historical memory of the ancient Egyptians themselves on this fascinating course. Students will be able to take an in-depth and uniquely insightful examination of the textual and artefactual evidence for monumental expression of royal and entrepreneurial power during this extraordinary period.

Course Director info
In Person Course Fee: £350 per person
Online Course Fee: £270 per person
Recommended reading



Cooney, K. (2014) The Woman Who Would Be King: Hatshepsut's rise to power in ancient Egypt. Crown Publishing Group.

Galán, J. M., Bryan, B. M., and Dorman, P. F. (eds) (2014) Creativity and Innovation in the Reign of Hatshepsut: Occasional proceedings of the Theban workshop. Oriental Institute of the University of Chicago.

Dorman, P. (1988) The Monuments of Senenmut: Problems in historical methodology. Kegan Paul International Egyptology.

Roehrig, C. H., Dreyfus, R., and Keller, C. A. (eds) (2005) Hatshepsut: From queen to Pharaoh. Metropolitan Museum of Art.


Monday 17 to Friday 21 July


ANCIENT PERSIA AND THE HEBREW BIBLE

Course Director: Prof. Lloyd Llewellyn-Jones (University of Cardiff)

This is a 5-day course to be held in person, livestreamed via Zoom, and will be available on video recording.

In this exciting historical-archaeological study, we will explore ancient Persian history and culture in the context of biblical accounts, enlarging upon this connection in discussions of numerous topics surrounding Persian rulers, seats of government, cultural norms, and religion. The course offers a broad survey of the Hebrew biblical literature and recent archaeological findings in Iran, Israel, and beyond. Focus will be given to several key Biblical texts, including Isaiah, Ezra and Nehemiah, and Esther, as well as to the Jewish community of Persian Egypt. Attention will also be drawn to the way in which much of the Hebrew bible received its editing in the Persian period and how ‘Persianisms’ found their way into many of its books. This course will also include a visit to the British Museum’s new exhibition, Luxury and Power: From Persia to Greece, led by the course director.

Course Director info
In Person Course Fee: £350 per person
Online Course Fee: £270 per person
Recommended reading



Davies, W. D. and Finkelstein, L. (eds) (1984) The Cambridge History of Judaism: Volume 1: The Persian Period. Cambridge.

Llewellyn-Jones, L. (2022) Ancient Persia and the Book of Esther: Achaemenid court culture. London.

Llewellyn-Jones, L. (2022) Persians: The age of the great kings. London and New York.

Houman Sarshar (2014) The Jews of Iran. London.

Silverman, J. (2012) Persepolis and Jerusalem: Iranian Influence on the Apocalyptic Hermeneutic. Atlanta.

Yamauchi, E. (1996) Persia and the Bible.. Michigan.


Monday 17 to Friday 21 July


READING COPTIC: APOCRYPHA AND APOCRYPHAL

Course Director: Dr Bill Manley

This is a 5-day course to be held in person, livestreamed via Zoom, and will be available on video recording.

Our brand new course for old friends and newcomers alike is designed to build on your skills in reading Sahidic Coptic and so enhance your understanding and appreciation of Egyptian culture. As ever, you will be invited to study different aspects of the language and apply them in reading, using notes specially written for BSS. This time we will concentrate on two collections of less familiar texts linked to The Bible, the Apocrypha, and the apocryphal gospels, including an impressive seventh century edition of The Sayings of Jesus Ben Sirach in The British Museum and a slightly later edition of The Life of Joseph the Carpenter from the celebrated library of Shenoute’s White Monastery.

Please note: You need not have taken the introductory course COPTIC: A COURSE FOR BEGINNERS at BSS, but READING COPTIC assumes you do have some experience in reading Coptic texts—as a rule of thumb you should be comfortable reading a short narrative including the past tense and circumstantial forms. However, do not worry about the intensity: there will be plenty of time for supervised practice and for questions and answers with your tutor. If you have taken READING COPTIC with us previously, you will find all-new content in this latest course.

Course Director info
In Person Course Fee: £350 per person
Online Course Fee: £270 per person
Recommended reading



The following books are not essential but you may find it helpful to bring a copy with you, if you happen to have one.

Cannuyer, C. (2001) Coptic Egypt: The Christians of the Nile. Thames and Hudson.

Smith, R. (1993) A Concise Coptic-English Lexicon. Scholars Press.