Home ] [ Project ] Research ] Staff ] Links ]



Czech National Centre of Egyptology

 Charles University in Prague


Director:  Assist. Prof. Dr. Ladislav Bareš, CSc



Czech National Centre of Egyptology was founded on 1.7. 2000 in cooperation with the Czech Institute of Egyptology (Charles University, Faculty of Arts), Faculty of Civil Engineering of the Czech Technical University in Prague and the Naprstek Museum in Prague.

Czech National Centre for Egyptology

 Objectives of the project

The primary aim of the Czech National Centre (further the Centre) is the creation of an institution with a professional potential, research specialisation and activities and material and technical resources to make possible a substantial development of Egyptological research in the Czech Republic for the upcoming years. Taking up the internationally accepted and highly acclaimed results already attained by Czech Egyptology, the Centre will provide new forms of integration of Czech Egyptology into international scholarly research. Another aim is to accomplish the financially and professionally demanding projects, the realisation of which has so far been impossible.

The activity and research specialisation of the Centre should concentrate on:

1)      the advancement of theoretical research, mainly on problems connected with the rise and development of the oldest Egyptian state;

2)      the research in the field of Coptology and Arabic and Islamic studies;

3)      the collection, processing and publication of new historical sources, which may in a significant way contribute to the solving of problems sub 1);

4)      the creation of such an institution, which would (with its activities, potential and resources) be able to guarantee the teaching of Egyptology including doctoral studies for the entire Czech Republic;

5)      the professional training of young research specialists;

6)      the qualitatively new intensification of interdisciplinary co-operation;

7)      the significant improvement of material and technical resources of Egyptological research and use of modern methods of research, which will guarantee a further, higher level of integration of Czech Egyptology into interdisciplinary and international scholarly co-operation;

8)      the use of modern computation technologies for the gathering, archiving and analysis of Egyptological data.;

Gained and Expected results

The expected results of the Centre are mainly:

1)      the acquisition of new information about the history of ancient Egypt and, more generally, of the ancient world;

2)      the discovering and gaining of new archaeological sources to the history of Egypt;

3)      the acquisition of new information about economy and social life by means of analysis of epigraphic sources;

4)      presentation of new results of the Centre’s research in Egyptology and Arabic and Islamic Studies to both Czech and international public;

5)      continuing the successes of Czech Egyptology in international co-operation for the salvation of the cultural heritage of ancient Egypt, which include e.g. the UNESCO – project for the rescue of the monuments of Nubia threatened by the construction of the Assuan Dam in 1960 – 80, the participation on the UNESCO project of the construction of the Museum of Nubia etc., the Centre should respond to new difficult tasks that contemporarily face Egyptian archaeology and world Egyptology;

6)      further strengthen and expand the importance of Czech Egyptology, which has already in the last years assumed one of the most significant posts on pan-European scale and has become a frequented institution for doctoral studies and training of young researchers in this field, mainly from Central and Eastern Europe;

7)      by means of lectures and exhibitions and through Internet pages and the mass-media, to introduce to the Czech and international public the results reached by the Centre;

8)      taking up the level already attained, to contribute in novel and qualitatively higher ways to the promotion of the Czech Republic abroad by reaching outstanding results in archaeological research..

Significance of the project

The creation of the Centre will enable:

1)      the realisation of research projects which has so far been inhibited by the lack of

professional potential, but also of material, technical and financial resources;

2)      to concentrate young and talented researchers to work on concrete research

projects and to guarantee their further professional development;

3)      considering the professional, internationally acclaimed qualities and

experience of most of the core members of the Centre, to create the most important Centre-European institution, which will become a sought-out place for higher education of young researchers in the field of Egyptology;

4)      the partaking of the members of the Centre on international conferences and scholarships, and their training at the most prominent foreign Egyptological institutions;

5)      the acquisition of the material and technical resources, mainly for fieldwork in Egypt, thus enabling the replacement of the already outdated and inadequate material and technical resources of Czech Egyptology;

6)      the acquisition of the necessary funding to guarantee a long-term, uninterrupted work on scholarly tasks and the overcoming of the repeated discontinuities mainly in the realisation of research projects in Egypt;

7)      on a  qualitatively higher level, to gather, process and store Egyptological information and guarantee their accessibility for the general public, further to acquire new information technologies and to guarantee a continuous development and high level of the contemporary specialised Egyptological library, which is even today considered one of the largest in Central and Eastern Europe.

Proposed method of realisation of the project

The activity of the Centre will concentrate on the work on scholarly tasks, on their publication and presentation and on the education of young specialists. The project has been planned for the time span of five years and will be realised on two levels. The research base of the Centre will be located in Prague, where the research itself, the planning of expeditions to Egypt, the processing and archiving of accumulated sources from the research and finally also the preparation of publications (both in Czech and in other languages), will take place. In Egypt, the aim of the expeditions shall be the collection and documentation of sources, which are indispensable for the research work of the Centre. The realisation of the project will rely in a significant way on  interdisciplinary co-operation, mainly with the department of applied geodesy of ČVUT, with the departments of geophysics, anthropology and archaeology of the Archaeological Institute of the Czech Academy of Sciences and with the studio of the architect Ing. M. Balík. The individual research tasks and themes continue the streams and results of Egyptological research hitherto pursued in the Czech Republic and will also enable its effective interconnection with doctoral studies.

Research programme of the Centre

The activity of the Centre will concentrate mainly on the solution of research tasks, on their publication and presentation and on the education of young specialists. New, original sources will make possible the solution of hitherto unexplored questions and theoretical problems in Egyptology. Individual research tasks and themes continue the streams and results of Egyptological research hitherto pursued in the Czech Republic and will also facilitate its effective interconnection with doctoral studies.

The realisation of the programme of the Centre will include several projects. The contents of these projects (with the exception of the survey and geodesic map)  can not be expected to be exploited within the first five years and work on them may continue in long-term perspective.