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Ancient Egypt at the British Museum - Belief and Society

Explore the customs, beliefs and and daily lives of the Ancient Egyptians through the British Museum’s rich collection.

Benefits from the Friday evening openings.

Refreshments in the Great Court restaurant.

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02 Oct 2020 £205 Book this tour

  • The British Museum: the Egyptian Room, with visitors. Engraving by Radclyffe after B. Sly, 1844.
    The British Museum: the Egyptian Room, with visitors. Engraving by Radclyffe after B. Sly, 1844.
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Ancient Egypt is perhaps best known for its mummies and pharaonic splendour, its monumental architecture and colossal statuary. One of the world’s most important collections of these antiquities is housed in London, at the British Museum. Its display of pharaonic might is second to none – Ramesses II casts his eyes downwards, a gaze which inspired Shelley’s ‘Ozymandias’. The tours of the Egyptian galleries during this late-afternoon visit focus on the beliefs and lives of the ordinary people.

The itinerary takes advantage of the less-crowded Friday ‘late’ at the British Museum and starts by exploring the formation of the Egyptian state around 3100 BC, and the changes this brought to the ancient people living in the Nile Valley. The material culture of this early period in Egypt’s history helps us understand the cultural, technological and political developments which changed Egypt forever; the social history of the Ancient Egyptian people, the transition from chiefdoms to a country united under one ruler.

Time is spent in the Egyptian Sculpture Gallery, to wander between the statues of pharaohs and gods. Here is a treasure-trove of evidence for private religion and daily life, lesser-known aspects of the ancient Egyptian civilisation. And in the Nebamun gallery, fragments of painted plaster from the tomb of the 15th Century BC temple accountant, as fine as any known examples of ancient Egyptian art, are found displayed alongside an array of objects of daily use. Art and artifacts complement each other to create the fullest picture of ancient Egyptian society.

Sessions are interspersed with refreshments in the Great Court Restaurant.

Lucia Gahlin

A Research Associate at UCL’s Institute of Archaeology, and freelance lecturer. She has lectured for the Universities of London, Reading, Surrey, Sussex, Exeter, Bristol and Warwick. She works closely with the Petrie Museum of Egyptian Archaeology, and has been Small Finds Registrar on excavations at Amarna in Egypt. Her publications include Egypt: Gods, Myths & Religion.


3.15pm at the British Museum.


c.8.15pm at the British Museum.




This includes afternoon refreshments, a light supper (1-course with wine) and a donation to the museum.

More information about London Days gift vouchers.

Group size

Maximum 14 participants.



We will return the full amount if you notify us 22 or more days before the event. We will retain 50% if cancellation is made within three weeks and 100% if within three days. Please put your cancellation in writing to We advise taking out insurance in case of cancellation and recommend that overseas clients are also covered for possible medical and repatriation costs.

Map: London Days.

'A fascinating tour with an enthusiastic and approachable lecturer. Her detailed knowledge of the lives of ordinary Ancient Egyptians brought them to life in the context of the wider aspects of Ancient Egypt and the development of their culture. An excellent day.'