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Archaeology
Timelines:   Studies in Honour of Manfred Bietak
Edited by Ernst Czerny, Irmgard Hein, Hermann Hunger, Dagmar Melman, and Angela Schwab
Illustrated. Vol. I: 454 pp., Vol. II: 498 pp., Vol. III: 387 pp.
Peeters Publishers. US$391.00
ISBN: 9789042917309

Manfred Bietak is an Austrian archaeologist at the Austrian Academy in Vienna. In 2006, colleagues and fellow specialists in archaeology honored his many contributions to the fields of archaeology and Egyptology. Timelines: Studies in Honour of Manfred Bietak is a "Festschrift," a type of work that uses scholarly essays to honor an academic. Timelines is a large, three-volume work with a great number of excellent essays on Egyptology, Bietak's specialty. Bietak is known for his ability to help his students and colleagues in other areas of archaeology as well, and the collection of essays in this Festschrift reflect that diversity. In addition to the numerous essays that focus on Egyptology, Timelines: Studies in Honour of Manfred Bietak also contains works on the Levant, Phoenicia, Cyprus and Crete, Syria, Mesopotamia, and Nubia. Authors discuss both pre-dynastic and proto-dynastic Ancient Egypt. Sections on science, chronology, and Egypt in the modern world round out the collection and reflect Bietak's interests in these areas. The international character of archaeology is also represented in Timelines. The work includes some essays in German and French, in addition to those in English.

The essays in a Festschrift are written in honor of a person, but they are not about the person. In Timelines: Studies in Honour of Manfred Bietak, the essays are about fascinating topics in archaeology. It with is their interesting subject matter, lively writing style, and high quality of scholarship that the contributors show their respect for their colleague, Bietak. Many of the essay writers use pictures and other graphical methods like tables and charts to present a focused and clear discussion of their topic. The bibliography that accompanies each essay is a ready resource for readers who want to pursue a topic further. Timelines: Studies in Honour of Manfred Bietak will make good reading for professional as well as armchair archaeologists.

Manfred Bietak is the chairman of the Egyptian Commission and the head of Special Research Programme SCIEM2000 (Synchronization of Civilizations in the Eastern Mediterranean in the 2nd Millennium BC). He is also the director of Austrian excavations at two sites: the Nile delta site of Tell el-Daba'a from the Hyksos period; and of neighboring Piramesse, the Nineteenth Dynasty capital of Egypt. In addition, he serves as editor for the Egyptological journal Ägypten und Levante ("Egypt and the Levant").

Maria Davies, for Notable Book Reviews
Notable Book Reviews received one or more copies of this book in exchange for this review.
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