The great forgotten Victorian Egyptologist
Amelia B Edwards (1831–92) was an English novelist, journalist, traveller and Egyptologist. Edwards toured Egypt in the winter of 1873–74, experiencing a fascination with the land and its cultures, ancient and modern. Journeying southwards from Cairo in a hired dahabiyeh (manned houseboat) she and a companion visited Philae and ultimately reached Abu Simbel, where they remained for six weeks. Edwards wrote a successful self-illustrated description of her Nile voyage entitled A Thousand Miles up the Nile (1877).
Her travels in Egypt made her aware of increasing threats to ancient monuments from tourism and modern development. She set out to hinder these through public awareness and scientific endeavour, becoming an advocate for research and preservation of them. In 1882 she co-founded the Egypt Exploration Fund with Reginald Stuart Poole, a curator at the British Museum. Edwards became joint honorary secretary of the fund until her death. She gained the nickname Godmother of Egyptology for her contribution.
Clive Barham Carter studied Egyptology at Cambridge – as the only undergraduate. He was awarded a scholarship with the Egypt Exploration Society to dig at Saqqara under Prof Walter Emery. Later, he joined the staff at Charterhouse as a history teacher, a position he accepted with some trepidation having been a pupil there. He managed to maintain his interest in Ancient Egypt by lecturing at the City Literary Institute and by sneaking Egypt into his General Studies classes.
In retirement, he has returned to his enthusiasm for Ancient Egypt and now lectures at the Guildford Institute and for u3as, local groups and museums. He is an accredited lecturer with the Arts Society.
10.00 The Early Life of Amelia Edwards – An Unusual Upbringing
11.30 A Literary Career – Novelist, Ghost Stories & The Travelogue of Egypt
12.30 Lunch (bring your own) tea/coffee available
1.30 Travelling A Thousand Miles up the Nile in 1873
3.00 A New Enthusiasm for Amelia Edwards & Her Legacy in Egyptology
£12 (£15 to non-members)