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Learn about Egyptology: a basic bibliography

The proposed bibliography is voluntarily large ... and the number of pages should not frighten the beginner!

It is classified by themes, so that you can find a reference whatever question you have when approaching Egyptian civilization. All the recommended works are accessible to non-specialists.

History of Egyptology:

J. LACOUTURE, Champollion: a life of lights, Paris, 1991.

R. SOLÉ, The great adventure of Egyptology, Paris, 2020.



J. BAINES, J. MALEK, Cultural Atlas of Ancient Egypt, Paris, 1982.

Cl. SOMAGLINO, Atlas of Ancient Egypt, Paris, 2020.



To begin

N. GRIMAL, History of ancient Egypt, Paris, 1989 (Pocket version published in 1994).

D. AGUT, JC MORENO GARCIA, Egypt of the Pharaohs: from Narmer to Diocletian: 3150 BC. AD - 284 AD J.-C., Paris, 2016.

P. TALLET, Fr. PAYRAUDEAU, Chl. RAGAZZOLI, Cl. SOMAGLINO, Pharaonic Egypt: history, society, culture, Paris, 2019.

To go deeper :

Cl. VANDERSLEYENEgypt and the Nile Valley. Volume 2. From the end of the Old Kingdom to the end of the New Kingdom, Coll. “New Clio”, Paris, 1995.

Bro. PAYRAUDEAUEgypt and the Nile Valley. Volume 3. The late eras (1069-332 BC)., Coll. “New Clio”, Paris, 2020.


MY. BONHÊME, A. FORGEAU, Pharaoh: Secrets of Power, Paris, 1988.

Pharaoh (catalog of the exhibition at the Institut du monde arabe, 15 Oct. 2004 - 10 Apr. 2005), Paris, 2004.

A. B. LLOYD (ed.), A Companion to Ancient Egypt, 2 vol., Maden, 2010.

The great eras:

The pre- and proto-historical eras:

B. MIDANT-REYNES, The origins of Egypt, from the Neolithic to the emergence of the state, Paris, 2003.

Old Empire:

Mr. BAUD, Djoser and the IIIe dynasty, Paris, 2002.

Y. GOURDON, Pepy Ier and VIe dynasty, Paris, 2016.

D. ARNOLD, K. GRZYMSKI, Chr. ZIEGLER (ed.), Egyptian art in the time of the pyramids (catalog of the exhibition at the National Galleries of the Grand Palais), Paris, 1999.

Middle Kingdom:

N. FAVRY, Sesostris I and the beginning of the XIIe dynasty, Paris, 2009.

Cl. OBSOMER, Sesostris Ier : Chronological and historical study of the reign (Knowledge of ancient Egypt 5), Brussels, 1995.

P. TALLET, Sesostris III and the end of the XIIe dynasty, Paris, 2015 (2nd ed.).

G. ANDREU-LANOË, Fl. MORFOISSE (ed.), Sesostris III: legendary pharaoh (catalog of the exhibition of the Palais des Beaux-Arts in Lille), Paris, 2014.

W. GRAJETZKI, The Middle Kingdom of Ancient Egypt: History, Archeology and Society, London, 2006.

New Empire:

Fl. MARUEJOL, Thutmose III and coregency with Hatshepsut, Paris, 2007.

A. CABROL, Amenhotep III the Magnificent, Paris, 2000.

É. DELANGE (ed.), Amenophis III, the pharaoh-sun (exhibition catalog), Paris, 1993.

D. LABOURY, Akhenaten, Paris, 2010.

Mr. GABOLDE, Akhenaten: From mystery to light (Gallimard discoveries 478), Paris, 2005.

S. BICKEL, BM BRYAN, J.-L. CHAPPAZ (ed.), Akhenaten and Nefertiti, Sun and shadows of the pharaohs (Catalog of the exhibition held at the Geneva Museum of Art and History, October 17, 2008- 1er February 2009), Milan-Geneva, 2008.

Mr. GABOLDE, Tutankhamun, Paris, 2015.

Cl. OBSOMER, Ramses II, Paris, 2012.

P. GRANDET, Ramses III, story of a reign, Paris, 1993.

P. VERNUS, Affairs and scandals under the Ramses, Paris, 1993 (republished since in pocket).

P. GRANDET, The Pharaohs of the New Kingdom: A Strategic Thought (1550-1069 BC), Paris, 2008.

Late times:

O. PERDU (ed.), The Twilight of the Pharaohs: masterpieces of the last Egyptian dynasties (catalog of the Musée Jacquemart-André exhibition, 23 March-23 July 2012), Brussels, 2012.

Fl. GOMBERT-MEURICE, Fr. PAYRAUDEAU (ed.), To serve the gods of Egypt. Divine worshipers, singers and priests of Amun in Thebes (catalog of the exhibition of the Musée de Grenoble,) Paris, 2018.

M. CHAUVEAU, Egypt in the time of Cleopatra, 180-30 BC. J.-C., Paris, 1997.

M. CHAUVEAU, Cleopatra, beyond the myth, Paris, 1998.

History of Art and Archeology

J. LECLANT (dir.), Egyptian World, “The Universe of Forms” collection, vol. I, The Time of the Pyramids, Paris, 1978; flight. II, Empire of the Conquerors, Paris, 1979; flight. III, Twilight Egypt, Paris, 1980.

Chr. ZIEGLER, J.-L. BOVOT, Art and archeology: ancient Egypt (Manuals of the Louvre School), Paris, 2001.

M. HARTWIG (ed.), A Companion to Ancient Egyptian Art, I-II, Chichester, 2015.



Mr. LEHNER, The Complete Pyramids, London, 2008.

CN REEVES, RH WILKINSON, The Complete Valley of the Kings: Tombs and Treasures of Egypt's Greatest Pharaohs, London, 2008.

RH WILKINSON, The Complete Temples of Ancient Egypt, London, 2000.


Collections of translations of texts:

P. BARGUET, The Book of the Dead of the ancient Egyptians, Paris, 1967.

M. CHAUVEAU, D. AGUT-LABORDÈRE, Forgotten heroes, magicians and sages of ancient Egypt: an anthology of literature in demotic Egyptian, Paris, 2012.

P. GRANDET, Tales from ancient Egypt, Paris, 1998.

E. HORNUNG, The afterlife texts in ancient Egypt, Paris, 2007.

P. VERNUS, Wisdom of Pharaonic Egypt, Paris, 2010.

P. VERNUS, Love songs from ancient Egypt, Paris, 1992.

Religion, beliefs, magic:

J.-P. CORTEGGIANI, Ancient Egypt and its gods: illustrated dictionary, Paris, 2007.

Bro. DUNAND, Chr. ZIVIE-COCHE, Men and Gods in Egypt, 3000 BC. AD –395 AD. J.-C., Paris, 2006 (2e ed.).

E. HORNUNG, The Gods of Egypt: One and Many, Paris, 1992.

Y. KOENIG, Magic and magicians in ancient Egypt, Paris, 1994.

D. MEEKS, Chr. FAVARD-MEEKS, The daily life of the Egyptian gods, Paris, 1993.

S. SAUNERON, The priests of ancient Egypt, Paris, 1988.

Funeral beliefs:

J. ASSMANN, Death and beyond in ancient Egypt, Monaco, 2003.

E. HORNUNG, The afterlife texts in ancient Egypt, Paris, 2007.

J. H. TAYLOR (ed.), Journey Through the Afterlife, Ancient Egyptian Book of the Dead (exhibition catalog at the British Museum), London, 2010.

Introduction to the Egyptian hieroglyphic medium:

P. GRANDET, B. MATHIEU, Hieroglyphic Egyptian course, Paris, 2003.

JP ALLEN, Middle Egyptian, An Introduction to the Language and Culture of Hieroglyphs, Cambridge, 2014 (3e ed.).

Cl. OBSOMER, Egyptian hieroglyphic, educational series, Brussels, 2009.

R. de SPENS, Lessons for learning Egyptian hieroglyphics, Paris, 2020 (2e ed.).