Egyptology is the term used in referring to the study of ancient Egypt. This encompasses her history, religion, language, art, literature, culture and architecture. In essence, the study focuses on Egypt’s happenings starting from the 5th millennium (BC) to the 4th Century (AD).
Egyptology is said to have been started by the Egyptians themselves. Some of the early iconic Egyptians who played a key role in this field include Thutmose IV and Prince Khaemweset who restored The Sphinx and, identified and restored various historic temples, tombs and buildings, including the pyramids respectively. Today, people who specialize in Egyptology are referred to as Egyptologists. Interestingly, while Americans categorize this field under archaeology, Europeans regard it as a philological discipline.
Although people from all around the world have been keenly studying Egypt’s mysteries for years, modern Etymology is approximated to have started in 1822. This started shortly after Napoleon Bonaparte invaded Egypt. It’s during this time that Europeans started coming in touch with early Egypt’s source materials with the likes of Ippolito Rosellini, Thomas Young, Jean Francois Champollion and Karl Richard Lepsius gaining worldwide recognition. However, it wasn’t until William Matthew Flinders Petrie introduced different field preservation methods such as excavation, field preservation and recording that Egyptology started being deemed as a professional line of work. It’s through this that new and highly famed scholars, like Howard Carter, Florence Nightingale and Harriet Martineau started travelling to Egypt and publishing their personal and professional accounts about their experiences in the country.
As of today, there exist various colleges and universities that offer Egyptology related degrees and programs. Examples of these include USA’s Yale University, University of Chicago, New York University and, UK’s University of London, University of Cambridge and University of Oxford among others. However, it is the German learning institutions that are best known for producing the best Egyptologists.
In a nutshell, we can conclude that Egyptology has played a key role in shaping the way humankind leads their lives. For instance, it’s has led to further research and proposals on adopting the same preservation methods used in preserving bodies in the past and, constructions that emulate ancient building techniques. In addition to this, Egyptology is fun, stimulating, inspiring, helps in adding substantial knowledge about past events and, gives insight in regards to how we live our lives. Therefore, learning about Egypt’s history is not just a thing for the scholars, but also for travelling enthusiasts, linguistics, religious people as well as people who want to be marveled by nature.