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Quarry marks in Partition B, Main Quarry at Gebel el Silsila : remarks on their meaning and function

Nilsson, Maria LU (2014) In Journal of the Society for the Study of Egyptian Antiquities
Abstract
Famous for its many New Kingdom stelai and funerary shrines, Speos of Horemheb and magnificent quarries, this paper presents a preliminary report on a lesser acknowledged feature of Gebel el Silsila: its quarry marks. Focusing here on the northern section – Partition B – of Silsila East’s Main Quarry, seventeen individual quarry faces display totally 376 quarry marks, which have been divided into 29 groups based on form and characteristics. By far the most common mark is the harpoon, followed by horned altars and hourglasses. Quarry marks appear as singulars or in groups, located on all heights and in all displayed directions. While these marks are commonly dismissed as ‘mason’s marks’ or identity marks that provided the name of a... (More)
Famous for its many New Kingdom stelai and funerary shrines, Speos of Horemheb and magnificent quarries, this paper presents a preliminary report on a lesser acknowledged feature of Gebel el Silsila: its quarry marks. Focusing here on the northern section – Partition B – of Silsila East’s Main Quarry, seventeen individual quarry faces display totally 376 quarry marks, which have been divided into 29 groups based on form and characteristics. By far the most common mark is the harpoon, followed by horned altars and hourglasses. Quarry marks appear as singulars or in groups, located on all heights and in all displayed directions. While these marks are commonly dismissed as ‘mason’s marks’ or identity marks that provided the name of a contractor, individual stone cutters, or teams, they have never before been fully classified or studied, thus resulting in a possible misconception of their meaning and function. By establishing form, analysing contextual references, and using contemporary pseudo script for comparison, the preliminary results of Partition B indicate instead primarily a symbolic meaning. (Less)
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author
organization
publishing date
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Contribution to journal
publication status
published
subject
keywords
Gebel el Silsila, quarry marks, graffiti, pseudo script, Roman Egypt
in
Journal of the Society for the Study of Egyptian Antiquities
publisher
Society for the Study of Egyptian Antiquities
ISSN
0383-9753
project
Pseudo script in Gebel el Silsila, a query into quarry marks, characters, codes and magic
language
English
LU publication?
yes
id
dbcb5798-dc72-4481-a3f7-3064cffc256a (old id 4927530)
date added to LUP
2015-01-15 11:45:55
date last changed
2016-04-16 00:37:30
@article{dbcb5798-dc72-4481-a3f7-3064cffc256a,
  abstract     = {Famous for its many New Kingdom stelai and funerary shrines, Speos of Horemheb and magnificent quarries, this paper presents a preliminary report on a lesser acknowledged feature of Gebel el Silsila: its quarry marks. Focusing here on the northern section – Partition B – of Silsila East’s Main Quarry, seventeen individual quarry faces display totally 376 quarry marks, which have been divided into 29 groups based on form and characteristics. By far the most common mark is the harpoon, followed by horned altars and hourglasses. Quarry marks appear as singulars or in groups, located on all heights and in all displayed directions. While these marks are commonly dismissed as ‘mason’s marks’ or identity marks that provided the name of a contractor, individual stone cutters, or teams, they have never before been fully classified or studied, thus resulting in a possible misconception of their meaning and function. By establishing form, analysing contextual references, and using contemporary pseudo script for comparison, the preliminary results of Partition B indicate instead primarily a symbolic meaning.},
  author       = {Nilsson, Maria},
  issn         = {0383-9753},
  keyword      = {Gebel el Silsila,quarry marks,graffiti,pseudo script,Roman Egypt},
  language     = {eng},
  publisher    = {Society for the Study of Egyptian Antiquities},
  series       = {Journal of the Society for the Study of Egyptian Antiquities},
  title        = {Quarry marks in Partition B, Main Quarry at Gebel el Silsila : remarks on their meaning and function},
  year         = {2014},
}