Egypt was the "Golden Land" of the ancient world, and it was here that techniques for the mining and refining of gold were developed. This precious metal played an integral part in the life and culture of ancient Egyptians and was widely used for jewellery, ornament and valued objects. Featuring over 400 photographs, this volume presents a wide range of ancient Egyptian gold objects and jewels. It constitutes a study of the subject, not only revealing some dazzling jewellery and metalwork but also tracing the development of the goldsmiths' techniques and fashions. The authors draw on textual evidence, representations from tomb wall-paintings and other archaeological remains to examine the place of gold in the lives of the ancient Egyptians: whether soldiers on the great expeditions to the desert mines, goldsmiths in their workshops or nobles and kings and the style and fashion of the jewellery that they wore. Belief in the magic and spiritual power of gold led the Egyptians to bury their dead adorned with golden amulets and jewels, resting among storehouses of treasures for enjoyment in the afterlife.
The tombs - and the treasures they contained - have attracted tomb robbers since antiquity, but those that survived are so overwhelming that Howard Carter entering the tomb of Tutankhamun or Pierre Montet uncovering the treasures of the royal tombs at Tanis could not believe their eyes. These, and the many other great discoveries by Egyptologists in recent years, complete this study of one of the greatest art forms of the ancient world.