Book of the Dead exhibition

Book of the Dead: Passport through the Underworld was an exhibition at the Garstang Museum of Archaeology in 2017.

I came in to do the photography for the exhibition. The purpose was twofold:

  • To create images of some of the details from the funerary texts, such as underworld deities, as well as common motifs found in the texts, to enhance the display. The images were printed out at much larger sizes than the original illustrations to help give the exhibition an ‘otherworldly’ feel
  • To photograph papyri that were too fragmentary or too fragile to exhibit so they could be included in the exhibition

I used a macro lens to photograph the papyri, picking out details, some of which are only a couple of centimetres big. I lit the papyrus low down and from the corner, to highlight the texture in the papyrus itself.

Read more about the Book of the Dead exhibition.

All photos are © Julia Thorne. Please don’t just take my photos, but if you’d like to use any in a lecture, presentation or blog post, please drop me an email via my contact page. If you share them on social media, a link back to this site or to one of my social media accounts would be brilliant. Thanks!

goddess holding eyes in the egyptian book of the dead
Goddess holding eyes in the Book of the Dead of Inaros [Saite Period | Garstang Museum of Archaeology | Acc. No. 2017/34/1]
sungod re with a serpent in the egyptian amduat
Re encircled by Mehen, from the 12th hour of the Amduat belonging to the lady Tjawtayundenit [21st Dynasty | Thebes | Garstang Museum of Archaeology | Acc. No. E.507.2]
an egyptian feather of truth on papyrus
Feather of Maat, Book of the Dead of Inaros [Saite Period | Garstang Museum of Archaeology | Acc. No. 2017/34/1]
two ancient egyptian deities on papyrus
Judgement deity 'Face Behind Him', in the Hall of Truths, Book of the Dead of Inaros [Saite Period | Garstang Museum of Archaeology | Acc. No. 2017/34/1]
an egyptian djed pillar on papyrus
A djed-pillar, rom the Book of the Dead of Inaros [Saite Period | Garstang Museum of Archaeology | Acc. No. 2017/34/2]
an egyptian tyet (isis knot) on papyrus
Tyet knot (Isis/Aset knot), Book of the Dead of Inaros [Saite Period | Garstang Museum of Archaeology | Acc. No. 2017/34/2]
thoth on an egyptian book of the dead papyrus
Thoth/Djehuty, Book of the Dead of Inaros [Saite Period | Garstang Museum of Archaeology | Acc. No. 2017/34/2]
two animal-headed deities in the egyptian book of the dead
Great Ennead deities in the Hall of Truths, Book of the Dead of Inaros [Saite Period | Garstang Museum of Archaeology | Acc. No. 2017/34/1]
a baboon on an egyptian papyrus
Thoth as a baboon atop the Scales of Truth, Book of the Dead of Inaros [Saite Period | Garstang Museum of Archaeology | Acc. No. 2017/34/1
an ancient egyptian illustrated papyrus
Book of the Dead of Bakenkhons [New Kingdom | Garstang Museum of Archaeology]

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