Mémoires de l’Institut français d’archéologie orientale du Caire
Number of Pages
Reisner, George A. "The History of the Egyptian Mastaba." In Mélanges Maspero 1. Mémoires de l'Institut français d'archéologie orientale du Caire 66. Cairo: Imprimerie de l'Institut Français d'Archéologie Orientale, 1934, pp. 579-584.
George Andrew Reisner, American, 1867–1942
Imprimerie de l'Institut Français d'Archéologie Orientale
RemarksSir; Egyptologist. Director of the Service des Antiquities. Nationality and life dates from Who was Who in Egyptology. (1846-1916) French Egyptologist, of Italian origin; he was born in Paris, 24 June 1846, son of Miss Adèle Maspero; he was naturalized when very young and educated at the Lycée Louis- le-Grand, 1853-65, and the Ecole Normale, Paris, 1865-7; he was made Professor of Egyptoloy Ecole des Hautes Etudes, 1869, he gained Doct.-ès 1873; appointed professor of Egyptian Philology and Archaeology, Coll. de France, 1874; Maspero became interested in hieroglyphs at the age of 14 while still at school, and in 1867 met Mariette (q.v.), who gave him two newly discovered hieroglyphic texts to study which, he then translated in less than a fortnight; he published these the same year, but his career was temporarily interrupted when he went with a French family to Montevideo and worked on the Inca language Quichua; he returned to France and studied with de Rougé (q.v.); he married 1. Harriet Yapp, 1871 (d. 1873) 2. 1880 Louise Justine Elisabeth Madeleine Catherine Balluet d'Estournelles de Constant de Rebecque; he went to Egypt in 1880, as head of an archaeological mission which later became the IFAO, and organized the work of recording scenes and inscriptions in many important tombs, espec. in the Valley of Kings; he was appointed Director of the Bulaq Museum, succeeding Mariette, 1881-6; also of the Antiquities Service; Mariette when dying had been interested in the opening of the smaller pyramids and Brugsch (q.v.) had discovered and copied the texts in Pepi I and Merenre; Maspero continued this work and opened three more; in all he copied and translated 4,000 lines of inscription, making the first edition of these famous Pyramid Texts ; he was also involved in the removal of the Deir el-Bahari collection of mummies to Cairo Museum, 1881; it is impossible to list all of his great achievements here but the following must be cited: he arranged and catalogued the immense collections in Cairo Museum, regulated excavation throughout Egypt, inaugurated the systematic clearance and preservation of Karnak, and with Lord Cromer's help built up the then embryonic Antiquities Service with five inspectorates for different areas; Maspero returned to France 1886-99, and was again Director in Egypt, 1899-1914, when illness forced him to go back to France in July; under his direction Reisner (q.v.) undertook the Archaeological Survey of Nubia, 1907-9; he acquired many honours, Acad. des Inscriptions, 1883; Hon. Fellow, The Queen's College and Hon DCL, Oxford 1887; Hon. KCMG, 1909; Sec. Perpétuel, Acad. des Inscr., 1914; his activity, industry and learning were enormous, and he held the premier place in Egyptology in his generation; he edited the gigantic Cairo Catalogue which had reached 50 vols. at the time of his death, and the Nubian temples vols. which then numbered 12; he wrote on a very wide variety of subjects and the number of his published works listed in his bib. exceeds that of any other Egyptologist, c. 1200 items; many of these were small or else reviews, his principal works being, L'Inscripion dédicatoire du Temple d'Abydos, 1867; Hymne au Nil 1868; Une Enquête judiciaire à Thébes au temps de la XXe dynastie (i.e. Papyrus Abbott), 1871; Des formes de la conjugaison en égyptian antique en démotique et en copte 1871; Les Pronoms personnels en égyptien, 1872; Du genre épistolaire chez les Eyptiens de I'époque pharaonique, 1872; Histoire ancienne des peuples de l'Orient, 1875, and many later- eds.; Mémoire sur quelques Papyrus du Louvre, 1875 Etudes Egyptiennes-Romans et poésies du papyrus Harris no. 500..., 1879; Etudes Eg.- Etude sur quelques peintures et sur quelques texts relatifs aux funérailles, with le conte d'Apôpi et de Soknouri, 1881; La Trouvaille de Deir-el-Bahari, with E. Brugsch, 1881; Les Contes populaires de L'Egypte ancienne ..., 1882; Guide du visiteur au musée de Boulaq, 1883; La Trouvaille de Deir-el-Bahari, 1883; L' Archéologie éyptienne, 1887, trans. by A. B. Edwards; Les Momies Royales de Deir-el-Bahari, fol., 1889; Trois années de fouilles dans les tombeaux de Thèbes et Memphis, fol., 1889; Catalogue du Musée Egyptien de Marseille, 1889; Histoire ancienne Egypte, Assyrie. 1890, trans. by A. Morton; Fragments de manuscrits coptes-thèbains provenant de, la Bibl. du Deir Amba-Shenoudah. 1892; Les Inscriptions des pyramides deSaqqarah, 4°, 1894; Histoire ancienne des peuples de l'Orient classique, 3 vols., 4-, 1895, 1897, 1899, (trans, and ed. A. H. Sayce as The Dawn of Civilization -Egypt and Chaldea, 1896; The Struggle of the Nations - Egypt, Syria and Assyyia, 1896; The Passing of the Empires, 1900); Fouilles autour de la pyramide d'Ounas, with A. Barsanti, 1900; Guide du visiteur au musée du Caire, 1902; and many eds.; Causeries d'Egypte, 1907; Les Mémoires de Sinouhit..., 1908; New Light on Ancient Egypt, trans. E. Lee, 1908 Sarcophages des époques persane et ptolémaïque, Cairo Cat., 4°, 1908; Egypt: ancient sites and modern scenes, 1910; Essai sur I'art égyptien , 1912; Etudes de mythologie et d'archéologie ég., 8 vols., 1893, 1898, 1900; 1911, 1912, 1913, 1916; Les enseignemets d'Amenemhaît l et à son fils Sanouasrît Ier 1914; he also translated Ebers Egypt, 1880,1881, edited the works of Renouf (q.v.) and as a young man transcribed Champollion's Notices, Maspero's second wife died Paris, 22jan. 1953 aged nearly 100; he died in Paris whilst about to address a meeting of the Academy, 30 june 1916 H. Cordier, Bibliographie de Gaston Maspero, 1922, 127-35, enumerates a long list of obituary notices of Maspero, many with portraits; H. Cordier, Maspero en Amérique, 1920; AE (1916), 145-9 (W. M. F. Petrie); ASAE 16 (1916), 129-40 (portr. Daressy) BSAC I (I 936) 'Gaston Maspero et les études coptes', 27-36 (portr.) (H. Munier); (CRAIBL, 1918 (1917), 445-82 (R. Cagnat); EB IIth ed., 17, 848; EB 1968 ed., 14, 1023 (W. R- Dawson); JEA 3 (1916), 227-34 (portr.) (E. Naville); JEA 33 (1947), 'Letters from Maspero to Amelia Edwards', 66.-89 (portr.) (W. R. Dawson); JMEOS 1915-16,104 (W. M. Crompton); JRAS 1917, 629-31 (L. W. King); La Grande Enc. 23, 362-3 (H. M.); Larousse 7, 144 (portr.); Mélanges Maspero, 3 vols. (I934-53) Mem. IFAO tom. 66-8, Nation 103 New York (I 916), 176-7( J. H. Breasted); Petrie, 27 and passim; PSBA 38 141-5 (G. F. Legge); Réc. (1916), Ric. Trav. 38 (1916), 211-25 (portr.) (E, Chassinat); Rev. Arch. 5e ser., iv (I916), 172-6 (portr.) (E. Naville); Rev. de L'hist. des religions, Nov.-Dec. 1916, 031-264 (A. Moret); Rev. Hist. 1916, 434-40 (A. Moret); Sphinx 21 (1924), 1-11 (G. jéquier); WWWii, 710