Abstract: The Wall of the Crow Cemetery in Giza, Egypt: Remembering the Children

Lecturer: Jessica Kaiser

This paper will give a brief overview of the non-elite Saite and Roman period Wall of the Crow Cemetery in Giza, but will mainly concentrate on the differential patterns of child-burials in the Saite material, which diverge from those of adults not only in terms of spatial arrangement within the cemetery, but also in terms of the amount and type of burial goods and bodily treatment they received. Differential burial patterns in child graves are not uncommon, in Egypt or elsewhere, and are usually thought to reflect actions of the families of the deceased rather than the identities of the children themselves. Since the evidence for the Egyptians’ view of children and childhood is rather sparse outside of the mortuary record, it is difficult to interpret the meaning behind the difference in burial rites between children and adults. However, the location of the Wall of the Crow Children’s Cemetery has a strong association with fertility today, which may be retained from ancient times. This, along with the motifs of some of the burial items, may point to an additional aspect of the mortuary behavior at the Giza cemetery.

 

Bibliography:

Baxter, Jane Eva, 2005    The Archaeology of Childhood. Walnut Creek: Altamira press.

Bruyere, B.,1937    Rapport sur les Fouilles de Deir el Medineh (1934-1935). Cairo, IFAO

Hansen, Nicole B., 2008    Motherhood in the Mother of the World: Continuity and Change of             Reproductive Concepts and Practices in Egypt from Ancient to Modern Times.  PhD dissertation, University of Chicago

Harrington, Nicola, 2007 “Children and the Dead in New Kingdom Egypt” In: Current Research in           Egyptology 2005, Rachel Mairs and Alice Stebenson (Eds), Oxford

Meskell, Lynn, 1994    “Dying Young: The Experience of Death at Deir el Medina”,      Archaeological Review from Cambridge 13 (2), pp. 35-45

Raven, M. J., Martin, G.T., Aston, D. A., 1991    The tomb of Iurudef. A Memphite Official in the Reign of Ramesses II. London,       EES

Robins, Gay, 1994-5 “Women and Children in Peril: Pregnancy, Birth and Infant Mortality in Ancient Egypt”, KMT 5 (4), pp. 24-35

Sofaer Derevenski, Jo, 1994   "Where are the Children? Accessing Children in the Past". Archaeological Review from Cambridge 13:2.

Spieser, Cathie, 2008    “Cercueils d’enfants dans l’Egypte Ancienne et Tardive” In: Nasciturus, infans,  puerulus vobis mater terra: la muerte en la infancia, Francesco Gusi Jener, Susanna Muriel, Carme Olària (Eds), Castellon, pp 513-550

Featured Lecturer

Malcolm Bell, III is Professor Emeritus of Greek Art and Archaeology with the McIntire Department of Art, University of Virginia.  He holds his degrees from Princeton University, and his areas... Read More

Upcoming Events

List an Event

Dig Deeper

Email the AIA
Subscribe to the AIA e-Update

Sign Up!