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Description - Gifts from the Pharaohs by Christiane Desroches-Noblecourt

Internationally renowned Egyptologist Christiane Desroches Noblecourt reveals how the ancient world shaped the way we live today. In this scholarly yet accessible work, Desroches Noblecourt substantiates how the fundamental ideas, principles, and beliefs on which Western civilization is based originated in ancient Egypt. From the symbol of the lion as king of the animals to the design of Greek columns, she traces the evolution of ideas back to the pre-Christian era in Egypt. Anubis with his head of a black dog is an earlier form of Saint Christopher, the patron saint of travelers, while Saint George slaying the dragon echoes Tutankhamun launching his harpoon. Modern-day superstitions also have ancient roots: the customary kiss on New Year's Day was first practiced by the Egyptians. Egyptian innovations continue to affect our lives in concrete ways as well. Papyrus documents from the period attest to the use of medical practices still common today, including pregnancy tests, eye drops, and over four hundred drug names. Even cultural and leisure pursuits were derived from ancient Egypt: the harp is an elaboration of the Egyptian Iyre, and the royal wife Nofretari played chess. "Gifts from the Pharaohs" is a fascinating exploration of how the ancient and modern worlds converge.

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Book Details

ISBN: 9782080305626
ISBN-10: 208030562X
Format: Hardback
(250mm x 177mm x mm)
Pages: 288
Imprint: Flammarion
Publisher: Editions Flammarion
Publish Date: 2-Apr-2007
Country of Publication: France

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Author Biography - Christiane Desroches-Noblecourt

Christiane Desroches Noblecourt is honorary curator of Egyptian antiquities at the Louvre where she had a long and illustrious career as a curator and researcher. With UNESCO, she spent twenty years preserving temples endangered by the construction of the Aswan High Dam. She organized exceptional exhibitions on Tutankhamun and Ramses II, and, after retirement, she organized and directed the renovation of the Valley of the Queens. She has written dozens of books about Egypt and has been widely translated.