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Politics and Royal Foreign Women in the Court of Egypt: A New Analysis of Diplomatic Marriages during Late Bronze Age.


The PRINCESS project aims to study the foreign women of the royal entourage during the Late Bronze Age (LBA) in Egypt (1550-1060 BC) through the analysis of diplomatic marriages. These political unions that the Pharaoh contracted with the sisters and daughters of the rulers of the foreign Great Powers (Hatti, Mittani, Assyria and Babylonia) are well attested in the textual documentation of the Ancient Near East (ANE) and Egypt. The originality of this project is based on the fact that it involves the study of both Egyptian and ANE sources (textual, archaeological and iconographic data) with the help of ANE specialists, which allows an interdisciplinary approach. In addition, it combines the study of the funerary practices of these royal women, as well as of their ladies-in-waiting. All the data will be analysed in the light of gender studies and gender archaeology. The aim of the research is to highlight their role and status as well as their degree of acculturation at the Egyptian court. This project is crucial to understand the complexity of alliances in ancient worlds through the study of foreign women. New archaeological data coming from tombs recently discovered in Luxor will be associated with fieldwork on the site of Gurob (Fayum) led by the Experienced Researcher (ER) connected with the remains of a harem-palace and an important foreign population. This project will enable the ER to set up innovative models of reflection, which results will also be rewarding for both the host institution (Centre National de la Recherche scientifique) and the partner institution (Universität Basel). In return, the ER will benefit from the teaching and advice from leading ANE archaeologists and ceramicists, and gender studies specialists. Within the 24 months of the fellowship, the ER will gain new skills and international network, and the results will be disseminated through various channels and audiences (database, child’s book, monograph, symposium, TV documentary).

Call for proposal

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Funding Scheme

MSCA-IF-EF-ST - Standard EF


Rue Michel Ange 3
75794 Paris
Activity type
Research Organisations
EU contribution
€ 184 707,84