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4/11/00 - File #15308 Contact: Patricia McBroom (510) 643-7944

WHAT: A new Egyptian exhibit, "Sites along the Nile: Rescuing Ancient Egypt," at the University of California, Berkeley. The exhibit at the Phoebe Apperson Hearst Museum of Anthropology is the first since 1984 to display some of the campus's valuable collection of Egyptian artifacts. The 600 selected objects cover 5,000 years of cultural development in ancient Egypt, from the Predynastic through the early Christian era known as the Coptic Period.  
WHEN: The exhibit formally opens on Friday, April 14, at 10 a.m. and runs through the year. On Thursday, April 13, at 6:30 p.m, a gallery talk, "The Hearst Museum Ancient Egyptian Collections: History and Highlights," will be held by curators and museum staff.  
WHERE: UC Berkeley's Hearst Museum of Anthropology is located in Kroeber Hall on Bancroft Avenue, on the south side of campus.  
WHO: The exhibit was developed by faculty and students from the Department of Near Eastern Studies. They collaborated with the Hearst Museum to display the photographs and objects excavated by UC Berkeley's famed early archaeologist George A Reisner from four sites along the Nile.  
BACKGROUND: Exactly one hundred years ago, in the spring of 1900, Reisner excavated these objects - burial objects, crocodile mummies, sculpture, jewelry and other items - under the auspices of the University of California Expedition, which was supported by museum founder Phoebe Apperson Hearst from 1899-1905. Most of the sites were being looted at the time, and Reisner, practicing an early form of salvage archaeology, preserved the ancient objects in their context for cultural interpretation. Together with Hearst, Reisner amassed a systematic collection of more than 17,700 objects that ranks among the largest Egyptian collections in North America. This exhibit is the first of a series leading up to the museum's centennial celebration in fall 2001.

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