The Oriental Institute is a part of the University of Chicago and was founded by James Henry Breasted in 1919. The Oriental Institute is committed to research projects and is involved with various archaeological and research endeavors in order to obtain a clearer insight into ancient civilizations.
The Institute features a museum that is dedicated to the research of the world of the ancient Near East and offers galleries, exhibitions and collections. The Oriental Institute also hosts events such as workshops, films and lectures. The Oriental Institute Museum features a range of collections and galleries ranging from the Megiddo Gallery and the Mesopotamian Gallery to varied collections that are divided by area, such as Egypt.
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The Egyptian collection features strongly in the highlighted items at the Oriental Institute Museum and boasts almost 30,000 historical objects from the Nile Valley. The first major items of this collection were bought by the Institute founder, Mr. Breasted in 1894 while holidaying in Egypt. Many of the other items in the collection were received as donations from the Egypt Exploration Fund and the British School of Archeology in Egypt following University of Chicago sponsorship of the excavation work in Egypt.
The Oriental Institute has also conducted its own excavations and about 8,000 artifacts of the collection were unearthed at Medinet Habu between the years 1926 to 1933. The group of items from this particular excavation includes the colossal statue of Tutankhamun.
One of the highlights of the Egyptian collection and of the Institute as a whole is the colossal statue of Tutankhamun. This stunning statue is believed to be a king of late Dynasty 18. This is one of two such statues that were excavated at the same time. One belongs to Cairo's Egyptian Museum and the other stands proudly in the Oriental Institute Museum.
Two magical bricks are an interesting exhibit displayed at the Egyptian collection and these were found buried in an ancient Egyptian tomb. These bricks were originally created out of fine clay and were not baked. Bricks of these sorts were believed to have been placed inside tombs as a ritual for the protection of the dead.
Among other main features of this fascinating collection are a mummy mask, mummy case and a book of the dead that is one part of the original papyrus. The assortment of artifacts at the Oriental Institute is considered as one of the biggest Egyptian collections in the U.S.
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|The Ancient Egypt Site created by Jacques Kinnaer||
Last update: 16 March, 2010
- Egyptian Collection at the Oriental Institute in Chicago -