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Sponsored by: Archaeological Institute of America
Funerary shrouds, often overlooked or dissected into dichotomous parts because of their Hellenistic and Egyptian hybrid visual nature, provide unparalleled insight into religious and social facets of life and death in Roman Egypt. Moving beyond the aesthetic properties of these objects and focusing on the symbolic and magical functions of the imagery on the shrouds enables a fuller understanding of individual and collective social aspirations of the population. By placing the shrouds in their Egyptian contexts and by analyzing both the physical portrait of the dead and the surrounding iconography, one can comprehend how death was both physically and visually translated within an ancient multicultural context.
Short bibliography and/or website on lecture topic:
Jiménez, Lissette M. forthcoming. “The Sixth Sense: Multisensory Encounters with the Dead in Roman Egypt” in The Routledge Handbook of the Senses in the Ancient Near East, edited by Kiersten Neumann and Allison Thomason, Oxford, UK, and New York, USA: Routledge.
Riggs, Christina. 2005. The Beautiful Burial in Roman Egypt: Art, Identity, and Funerary Religion. Oxford; New York: Oxford University Press.
Walker, Susan (ed.). 1997. Ancient Faces: Mummy Portraits from Roman Egypt. New York: Routledge.