Desroches Noblecourt


lord of jubilees: annotated bibliography

Desroches-Noblecourt, Christiane. &nbspTutankhamen. &nbsp New York: ????

This book has been continuously in print since its first publication, more than 40 years ago, meaning that it continues to provide many readers with their primary information about Tutankhamun and the Amarna Age. The book’s greatest strength is its numerous color illustrations of objects in Tutankhamun’s tomb. These plates remain points of reference among Amarna specialists to the present day.

However, Desroches-Noblecourt’s extensive text is much more problematic. She is careless with her citations and disorganized in her presentation, switching without warning between assumptions of a long coregency, a short coregency, or no coregency at all for Akhenaten and Amenhotep III. A related shortcoming is her tendency to insert speculation in the midst of factual discussions without identifying these leaps of imagination as such. We are told, for example, that Egyptians who observed Tut’s golden mask remarked on his resemblance to Queen Tiyi, and we are also informed that Tut’s funeral feast climaxed in some sort of orgiastic activity.

Readers are best advised to enjoy the color plates while regarding the text as an example of outmoded scholarship.

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