Thursday, November 5, 2009

An Actual Example of Egyptian "Threat Formulae"... metaphysical warfare

Threat formula used in the novel 'The Smiting Texts'

There are many examples of chilling inscriptional violence used by the ancient Egyptians as a state weapon of warfare against enemies. Here is a flavour of threat formulae - you can view the video on You Tube -

The eerie, menacing music track was created on synth.

Saturday, October 10, 2009


The British Museum - for all the world

Now Egypt (or Zahi Hawass) has returned to making a grab for the Rosetta Stone!! Without Western decipherment (thank you, France) there’s be no Zahi Hawass (not to mention his American degree) or the ancient Egyptian “industry” as we know it. There’d probably no famous Cairo museum either. (And even if there were one, and they possessed the stone in question, it would be gathering dust in the basement somewhere!) My alternative Egyptologist character Ansor Hunter expresses his feelings on 'who owns the past'...

I was haunting the British Museum again and fell to wondering, as I looked around the Egyptian hall of sculptures: if extremists had their way, would they obliterate these remains from the so-called age of ignorance before Islam? Modern Muslim Egyptians live in fearful tension with their ancient past, it occurred to me, looking up at a colossal head of Rameses. Not long ago, Egypt's Grand Mufti issued a fatwa against sculpture. Egypt's ancient sculptures are forbidden by Islam, he said. Sculptors are doomed to receive the harshest treatment on Judgement Day. Egypt's Supreme Council of Antiquities distanced itself from the fatwa, saying that the sculptures they preserve and showcase are not for the purpose of idolatry but to provide a window on history. "We display statues so they can be studied and so people can get to know their heritage. This is Egypt's national heritage. We don't display them for worship." A number of influential sheikhs supported the mufti, however, while intellectuals and artists in Egypt were said to have called the fatwa laughable. And yet... Could firebrands one day use this as an excuse to harm treasures of history that belong to all of humankind? The Taliban in central Afghanistan demonstrated the peril of antiquities in the hands of idealogues. They used explosives to destroy the sixth century Buddhas of Bamyan, a pair of colossal standing Buddhas carved into the side of a sandstone cliff, irreplaceable examples of Indo-Greek art. Antiquities authorities in the Arab Republic of Egypt wonder why Western museums are less than eager to repatriate their Egyptian collections to Egypt, yet who can see what lies ahead for this Islamic nation? In spite of recent hectoring by Egypt's Supreme Council of Antiquities to return artefacts to Egypt from the museums of the world, modern Egypt's exclusive claim on the civilization of the pharaohs is shaky. Where is the link of this 21st century Arabic society with ancient Egypt? Not religion, not language, not politics, probably not even temperament, certainly not philosophy or social structure - let alone shared basic assumptions about equality between the sexes - not artistic tradition, not even the rhythm of life regulated by the ebb and flow of the Nile... the construction of the Aswan High Dam severed that link forever. Today's new antiquities grab is as questionable as the first rape of the Nile by colonial powers. It's a form of rampant nationalism and, in more enlightened times, disagreeable in my view. It's also counter-productive for today's Egypt. The very presence of ancient Egyptian antiquities in the museums of the world spurs thousands to visit Egypt every year. Why kill the goose that laid the golden sarcophagus? Feeling a surge of protectiveness for the civilisation I love, I suddenly - unreasonably, perhaps - wish that the British Museum's ancient Egyptian galleries were ten times their present size, along with those of the New York Metropolititan Museum of Art, The Louvre, Berlin Neues Museum and Turin Museum. And yet I like a great many Egyptians very much and I love the land of Egypt itself and its sites of antiquity and I value the feeling of place that connects me with the past. The Nile Valley is still the biggest and best museum of earth. The issue of who owns the past is a complicated one...

Monday, August 3, 2009


Snippets of the ancient past

Hatshepsut sent her statue to Punt. Imagine a milky stone queen in African bush sparking legends like She!

Ancient Egypt coded sex 1: scented delta of lotus blossom under nose, ducks and geese, monkey playing under a chair

Ancient Egypt sex code 2 Girl: 'I'll go into water & come up with red fish who will quiver with happiness in my fingers'

Ancient Egypt coded sex 3: wife's possessive arm around husband, intent eyes of a goddess taking pharaoh’s hand

Ancient Egypt subtle sex code 4: King Tut sits in a swamp shooting birds. Queen hands him an arrow in a languid hand

Ancient Egypt subtle coded sex 5: queen receives liquid from a flask poured into her cupped hand by king Tutankhamun

Pharaoh’s sandals bore images of wretched enemies to trample, walking stick handles had bound captives

Hathor-Sekhmet, Mankind's Destroyer. In THE SMITING TEXTS she flips between love goddess & marauding lioness

Did Egypt invent heaven? Before Egypt's vivid afterlife images, Israel’s Sheol a realm of gloomy nothingness

Ancient Egypt love affair starts young. Take children to a museum & 2 things they want to see - dinosaur and mummy

For many Egyptology greats ancient Egypt love began as child. Mine perhaps ignited by Nefernefernefer in The Egyptian

Was Ancient Egypt afterworld a virtual reality created by a civilisation's collective unconscious sustained by religion? -

Ancient Egypt est av pop over 3500 yrs 5.25 b people lived & died on Nile. Many secrets hidden under sands

Love the wondrous horizon where ruins emerge from ancient Egypt's empire of sand to send us text messages from eternity

Childrens’ art is eerily ancient Egyptian. Objects float, people stand side-on. Timeless, eternal, perspective-free - how they see the world

Potiphar's wife, Cleopatra, Nefernefernefer, & Sesheshet in The Smiting Texts novel - a tradition of fatal females

Tutankhamun discoverer Howard Carter told King Farouk he knew Alexander's tomb location, but would take secret to his grave

Scurrilous legend says last pharaoh magician Nectanebo ended up in Greece and in bed of Olympias, fathering Alexander

SCA's Zahi Hawass guards pharaohs DNA details: ‘National security’. Conspiracy crazies wonder Nubian, Hebrew, alien lineage?

Physicians applied mold from bread and the underside of lily to wounds. Pencillin thousands of years before Fleming?

After The Smiting Texts, I've made my Author's Corrections to The Armageddon Glyphs my next Egypt adventure thriller

Remote-killing execrations or curses were state instruments of warfare dramatised in the thriller The Smiting Texts

Pierre Montet, great French discover of Tanis tombs, died believing the Fayoum Great Labyrinth is still to be found

Should mummies in movies lurch? Or limp? Early sources say embalmers dislocated one ankle to slow the pursuing dead!

Friday, July 24, 2009



One of a pair?

Were there once two great sphinxes spanning the Nile?
A curious statement appears in older books on Egypt, without reference, that the Giza Sphinx was originally faced by another on the east bank of the Nile, forming a guardian leonine pair to the entry of Egypt. Never verified, it would certainly add to our understanding of the Sphinx, if correct.


Napoleon smitten by Egypt

Napoleon said it all about Egypt: In exile, Napoleon said emphatically in his first interview with the Governor of St. Helena: "Egypt is the most important country in the world."

It certainly is to me, and to the alternative archaeologist, Anson Hunter, in 'The Smiting Texts'.

Friday, April 17, 2009


Book number 2 is written - now working on number #3 in the Anson Hunter series

Sunday, February 22, 2009

The eternal allure of Egyptology

Philae temple - window on the ancient past