Belgian expansionism and the making of Egyptology, 1830-1952

In Belgium, Egyptology emerged later than elsewhere in Europe, but once under steam, it went through a rapid growth in the course of the first half of the 20th century. In the 1930s Brussels was occasionally even referred to as ‘the capital of Egyptology’.

Heliopolis.  © Le Soir Illustré, 15 Mar 1930.
"Frans van Kuyck", Book of Gold City of Antwerp, Part 1 1866-1892, p. 191. © FelixArchief.
"Ferdinand de Lesseps", Book of Gold City of Antwerp, Part 1 1866-1892, p. 144. © FelixArchief.
The Albert Eid & Co. antiquities store in Cairo. © Nag Hammadi Archive, Claremont Graduate University. Institute for Antiquity and Christianity, School of Religion.
Jean Capart - Severin Fresque © KMKG - MRAH
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News and activities

On Saturday September 21, 2019, P&P-member dr. Dorian Vanhulle will give a lecture at La Séance de Rentrée d'Egyptologica which will be hosted in Woluwe-Saint-Pierre.

lecture | conference
25 Jul 2019

According to the weather forecasts, we will reach temperatures around 38°C this week. One can say it is almost starting to feel like you are in Egypt! While some of us have serious difficulties standing the heath, Leopold II seemed to have fewer problems with the sun.

24 Jul 2019

On Friday September 13, 2019, P&P-member dr. Jan Vandersmissen will give a lecture at the 1st Conference of ​the International Academy of the History of Science: Science in different cultures and civilizations - Towards a transcultural history of knowledge which will

lecture | conference
1 Jul 2019

Another position just opened up in the research project “Pyramids and Progress: Belgian expansionism and the making of Egyptology, 1830-1952”, this time at ULB (Brussels). We need a documentalist!

27 Jun 2019

Last week, P&P-member Vincent Oeters presented his research at the Current Research in Egyptology 2019 conference at  theUniversity of Alcalá with a lecture titled 'Networking at its best: Interpersonalrelationships between Jean Capartand his colleagues abroad'.

lecture | conference
22 Jun 2019

Long before Belgian imperialism reached central Africa, the Belgian Royal Palace was already interested in the continent during the reign of Leopold I.

18 Jun 2019

On the occasion of the 150th anniversary of the opening of the Suez Canal in 1869, dr. Jan Vandersmissen will represent Pyramids & Progress at "Le Canal de Suez vu de Trieste et de Bruxelles" (The Suez Canal seen from Triëste and Brussels).

lecture | conference
17 Jun 2019

Cairo. February 24, 1929. While local merchants of all kinds and trades were putting up their shops, Belgian Egyptologist Jean Capart entered one of Cairo’s many antiquity shops.

13 May 2019

On 13 March P&P member prof. dr. Eugène Warmenbol of Université libre de Bruxelles kicked off the Verhaegen Chair Lecture Series with his inaugural lecture ‘Egypt and Freemasonry.

lecture | conference
13 Mar 2019

On 8 March 1930, this exact day some decades back in time, this issue of the Belgian magazine Le Soir Illustré was sold in book stalls all across the country (shown below).

8 Mar 2019

On the first English-language symposium on the History of Mediterranean Archaeology in the Low Countries, to be held 8 March 2019 at the Dutch National Museum of Antiquities in Leiden (the Netherlands), our PhD-student Vincent Oeters will present a paper titled: "From insignificant t

lecture | conference
6 Mar 2019

New exhibition at the Villa Empain in Brussels! The Boghossian Foundation highlights Heliopolis, birthplace of a new city built entirely from scratch by the Belgian industrialist Edouard Empain at the dawn of the twentieth century.

21 Feb 2019

At the 46th annual Flemish-Dutch Egyptologists Day, on 27 October 2018, P&P-team members Athena Van der Perre and Marleen De Meyer presented "Pyramids and Progress" to a curious audience of Belgian and Dutch Egyptologists.

lecture | conference
9 Feb 2019

Usually, the annual Blue Monday is seen as the uttermost depressing day of the year. However, if you want to to brighten up this day, you can also look through the blue lenses of Bernhard Fiedler.

31 Jan 2019

During their visits of Egypt, Belgian tourists were not only amazed by the architectural grandness of the pyramids and temple complexes, exotic fauna and flora also grasped their attention. Despite being indigeneous to the Seychelles instead of Egypt, Dr. A.

31 Jan 2019