All titles preceded by an orange scarab () are highly recommended by the author for those wishing to learn more about ancient Egypt and Egyptian mythology. These books are all personally owned by the author and are the sources for all information found on this web site.
Baines, John, et. al. Religion in Ancient Egypt: Gods, Myths and Personal Practice. Ithaca: Cornell, 1991.
This book is not for the casual reader. It includes in depth information regarding the common Egyptian's relationship with the gods, as well as the daily lives of the priests, and the religious significance of the pharaohs. It is laid out as a series of essays on the topics. Black and white photos only.
Barnett, Mary. Gods and Myths of Ancient Egypt. London: Regency House, 1996.
Filled with beautiful color photographs, it presents a summary of the mythology of Egypt. It also includes a small directory of some of the major gods.
Betro, Maria Camela. Hieroglyphics, the Writings of Ancient Egypt. New York: Abbeville Press Publishers, 1995.
Presented as a detailed dictionary of some of the most common hieroglyphs, it is filled with useful information. For each hieroglyph is shows the evolution of the written symbol through Egypt's history and an essay on the origin and meaning. It also presents a history of how hieroglyphs were first translated.
Brown, Deni. The Ultimate Ancient Egypt Sticker Book (The Ultimate Sticker Book). New York: Dorling Kindersley, 1994.
Great for kids, this sticker book contains wonderful stickers of mummies, statues and Egyptian amulets. Each sticker also includes a caption about each item.
Budge, E.A. Wallis. The Gods of the Egyptians. volume 1 of 2. 1904. New York: Dover, 1969.
Almost 100 years old, Budge's work on the ancient Egyptian religious beliefs has become outdated and controversial for its author's racist opinions regarding the Egyptians. However, the hard-core enthusiast will appreciate the sheer depth of information found in these two volumes. It includes direct translations of Egyptian texts, showing the hieroglyphs above, and the English translation below, and details on rarely described deities such as the four winds.
Budge, E.A. Wallis. The Gods of the Egyptians. volume 2 of 2. 1904. New York: Dover, 1969.
Please see description of volume one above.
Bunson, Margaret. A Dictionary of Ancient Egypt. New York: Oxford University Press, 1991.
A really great starting point for anyone interested in beginning to learn a lot about ancient Egypt. More of a small encyclopedia than a dictionary, Bunson's work includes entries on all aspects of ancient Egypt. The black and white illustrations are quite charming and wonderfully add to the work.
Clark, R.T. Rundle. Myth and Symbol in Ancient Egypt. 1959. London: Thames and Hudson, 1991.
Useful, but very dry and not very easy to read.
David, Rosalie. Handbook to Life in Ancient Egypt. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1998.
The best summary work I have found about ancient Egypt. It covers all aspects of Egyptian life, history and religion, plus it is highly readable. Great for high school students.
Dee, Jonathan. Chronicles of Ancient Egypt. London: Collins & Brown, 1998.
Probably the best work out there that has the myths of ancient Egypt. It does not sanitize them too much and it has oh so many pretty pictures.
Faulkner, R.O. The Ancient Egyptian Book of the Dead. Austin: University of Austin Press, 1972.
The Book of the Dead is in a way like the Bible of ancient Egypt. It contains instructions and magical spells for the deceased that allow them to enter into the Duat, or the Afterlife. This particular translation is quite charming for the many beautiful color vignettes from various copies of the book found in Egyptian tombs.
Green, Roger Lancelyn. Tales of Ancient Egypt. 1967. London: Puffin Books, 1995.
The best volume of Egyptian myths we have found to date. It includes approximately twenty-five complete myths. They are very readable and are great for children too! This book is very highly recommended to anyone interested in Egyptian mythology, whether casually or hard-core.
Harris, Geraldine. Gods and Pharoahs from Egyptian Mythology. The World Mythology Series. New York: Bedrick, 1981.
Geared more towards kids, this is another volume of Egyptian myths. Beautiful color illustrations accompany many of the myths and the stories are very well told.
Hart, George. Dictionary of Egyptian Gods and Goddesses. London: Routledge, 1986.
A personal favorite, this is truly a full encyclopedia about the gods and goddesses of ancient Egypt. It is very readable and contains detailed information about the most famous and the least well-known deities.
Hart, George. Egyptian Myths. The Legendary Past. Austin: University of Texas, 1990.
Not as readable as his Dictionary, Hart tells some of the lesser-known myths of ancient Egypt. The myths are not told narratively, but rather within a framework of explaining the ancient Egyptians' religious beliefs.
Hayes, Michael. The Egyptians. New York: Rizzoi, 1996.
A beautiful work; each chapter takes a snapshot of various aspects of Egyptian life, or of the life of a famous Egyptian.
Hornung, Erik. Ancient Egyptian Books of the Afterlife. Ithaca: Cornell, 1999.
Translated by David Lorton. The most complete descriptions I've found of the various ancient Egyptian religious texts.
Ions, Veronica. Egyptian Mythology. Library of the World's Myths and Legends. 3rd Ed. Bedrick: New York, 1982.
Wonderful! Contain detailed information about various deities, as well as the cosmogonies of various Egyptian nomes.
Lurker, Manfred. An Illustrated Dictionary of the Gods and Symbols of Ancient Egypt. London: Thames and Hudson, 1980.
Much like George Hart's Dictionary (see above), it is a mini encyclopedia describing the gods and symbols of Egypt. It is very good, although Hart's work is preferred.
Mertz, Barbara. Temples, Tombs, and Hieroglyphs: A Popular History of Ancient Egypt. New York: Peter Bedrick Books, 1964.
Wow! It reads like a novel and tells the history of ancient Egypt from the Pre-Dynastic period through the last days under the Greeks. Truly a spectacular work, very highly recommended.
Metropolitan Museum of Art. Treasures of Tutankhamun. New York: Ballantine Books, 1976.
If you get the chance to get your hands on this one, please do. It is the catalogue from the 1976 US tour of some of King Tut's most famous artifacts. Stunning color photographs highlight each object and details about each one are found at the end of the book. Several essays about the discovery of Tut's tomb and the world in which he lived are also included. Fabulous!
Pellham, Brian. Egyptian Hieroglyphs & Their Meanings. Bellevue: Kheper Publishing, 1995.
A pretty sad little book with horrid illustrations. Don't bother.
Putnam, James. Egyptology. New York: Shooting Star, 1990.
The color photographs are really nice, although the content leaves something to be desired.
Robbins, Gay. The Art of Ancient Egypt. Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1997.
This work is great for the art history buff who wants to learn more about how and why the Egyptians created their beautiful statuary, carvings, and paintings. A great book.
Scholz, Piotr O., Ancient Egypt, An Illustrated Historical Overview. Crash Course Series. Cambridge: Barron's, 1996.
This tiny book packs a powerful punch. It contains information not found in many other works and the color photographs are great.
Schulz, Regina, and Matthias Seidel, eds. Egypt, the World of the Pharoahs. Berlin: Konemann, 1998.
WOW! WOW! WOW! This book is huge and expensive, and worth every penny. It is very readable and extremely detailed in the information it imparts. It is filled with hundreds of full color photographs and contains essays on everything from the pyramids to non-royal artwork.
Shafer, Byron E., Ed. Temples of Ancient Egypt. Ithaca: Cornell Univeristy Press, 1997.
Excellent book with detailed descriptions of Egyptian temples, including architecture, infrastructure, and background religion.
Shaw, Ian, and Paul Nicholson. The Dictionary of Ancient Egypt. London: British Museum Press, 1995.
This is another personal favorite. It truly is really an encyclopedia of ancient Egypt. The entries are extremely detailed and cover all aspects of Egyptian art, life, history and religion. Many color photographs too.
Shenkman, Richard. Legends, Lies and Cherished Myths of World History. New York: Dover, 1996.
Not really about ancient Egypt, it disputes many well known "facts" of history. Very entertaining, recommended for any history buff.
Siliotti, Alberto. Guide to the Valley of the Kings. New York: Barnes & Noble Books.
Beautiful work specifically about the tombs of the Valley of the Kings. Great for studies of the evolution of the New Kingdom tombs as well as the art of the period. (Not offered by Amazon.com, check BarnesAndNoble.com.)
Silverman, David P., ed. Ancient Egypt. New York: Oxford University Press, 1997.
Lots of nice color photos. Your basic generic book about ancient Egypt. Nothing special.
Tannahall, Reay. Food in History. New York: Crown, 1988.
Another book for those who love to read about history. Tannahall lively runs through the world history of food, from prehistoric times to the modern day. Nothing is left out, and it is suprisingly entertaining reading.
Thames and Hudson, and Robert Adkinson, eds. Ancient Egypt (Sacred Symbols). London: Thames and Hudson, 1995.
A little pocket book describing a few of ancient Egypt's symbols. The color photos are beautiful.
Time-Life Books. What Life was Like on the Banks of the Nile, Egypt 3050-30 BC. New York: Time-Life, 1997.
The title is extremely accurate. This Time-Life book contains essays on all aspects of Egyptian life, from how the royalty spent their days to the life of the women and children. Highly recommended.
Tiredritti, Francesco, ed. Egyptian Treasures from the Egyptian Mueseum in Cairo. New York: Harry N. Abrams, Inc.
Not recommended unless you have a very sturdy coffee table. But if you do: oh my! Lush gorgeous images and a wealth of information about each artifact. An Egyptophile's dream!
Vercoutter, Jean. The Search for Ancient Egypt. Discoveries. London: Thames and Hudson, 1992.
A small book about the pioneers who explored Egypt and made some of the most fabulous discoveries. Great for those interested in the history of Egyptology.
Wilkinson, Richard H. Reading Egyptian Art: A Hieroglyphic Guide to Ancient Egyptian Painting and Sculpture. London: Thames and Hudson, 1992.
Another personal favorite. It intimately ties the symbols of ancient Egypt to actual cases of their use in art. Describes the symbols' origins and meaning. A fabulous title. Highly recommended.
Wilkinson, Richard H. Symbol & Magic in Egyptian Art. London: Thames and Hudson, 1994.
Such a shame that the author's last name is Wilkinson, makes it look like his books are the worst, when in fact they are the best. Once again, Wilkinson has done the impossible, explained the complex world of Egyptian symbolism in a readable and fun way. With his two books there is nothing else you need to understand Egyptian art.
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