Undergraduate Seminar: Roman Mummy Portraits
The Roman province of Egypt has bequeathed us a large number of vivid portrait faces painted in the encaustic technique (brightly colored wax—the oil painting of the ancient world). These paintings were placed over the actual faces of the mummified dead, as they set out on their long journey into the Egyptian afterlife. About 1000 such portraits survive, and of these about 100 still possess the complete mummy cases into which they were inserted. This class will seek to understand why these images were made, and what they attempt to communicate about the men, women, and children represented.
This course fulfills the following Major requirements: Geographical area (D) and Chronological period (I).