Event details

  • Monday | May 16, 2022
  • 10:30 am Meeting ID: 863 810 961

Call into the discussion: +1 929 436 2866 or +1 301 715 8592

Monday, May 16 10:30 a.m./ THE MYSTERY OF THE CIRCULAR STRUCTURES AT GIZA, EGYPT DR STEPHEN “DR. STEVE” PHILLIPS The pyramids and sphinx of Giza are not lone monuments in the desert, they are part of a vast cemetery complex that stretches nearly a mile from east to west. A joint archaeological excavation by Cairo University and Brown University has been mapping and surveying the northwestern section of the cemetery since 2000. I serve on the project’s management team. This behind- the- scenes lecture introduces the excavation, its goals, its methodology, its personnel, and its discoveries to date, much of which is now being published. This lecture examines the re-discovery and excavation of a pair of circular structures, constructed of sun-dried mud brick and shaped like igloos, the only examples of their kind yet found. An earlier archaeologist posited that these structures were once hyena cages. In a cemetery! Over 4,000 years old! Can this be true? If so, why? If not, then what were these structures? This lecture takes the audience where the public cannot go – behind the scenes on an actual modern excavation in Egypt. June 12, 2019 is a date that will live forever in the history of the Penn Museum. On that day, for the first time in nearly a century, the museum’s iconic, 12.5 ton (!) sphinx was lifted from its base, moved more than 900 feet (and one floor up!) into its new permanent home, to become the centerpiece of the museum’s totally redesigned grand entrance hall. Dr. Stephen Phillips is the Curatorial Research Coordinator in the Egyptian Section of the Penn Museum, Philadelphia. Dr. Phillips earned his B.A., M.A., and Ph.D., all from the University of Pennsylvania, in the fields of biological anthropology, archaeology, and Egyptology. He is listed with the Register of Professional Archaeologists. He has traveled extensively and participated in a wide range of archaeological excavations for more than 25 years, including fieldwork at Petra, Jordan; near Bordeaux in southwestern France; and in Egypt – at the Great Pyramids and at Saqqara. He is the Archaeological Site Supervisor and Biological Anthropologist for the joint Cairo University-Brown University