Sunday, March 1, 2015

An Afternoon with the Ancient Egyptians

Littlest dude is best behaved when he is one-on-one with any grown-up.  Otherwise, as the youngest of three, he's always searching for ways to get attention and let's just say, they are not always "positive" behaviours that are used to catch mommy or daddy's eye!
Now actually, I should clarify. In fact, Camden is pretty darn cute one on one.  He loves a good old hand-hold, a warm "huggle" (hug/cuddle) and some tasty snack-sharing.  So when he asked if we could have a simple mom and son discovery date, I jumped at the occasion.  And I knew just the place to take him!
How does ancient Egypt sound??
Yep.  He was into that!

We drove about 45 minutes to a nearby city where the local children's museum, simply called "The Museum", was displaying several items from the Royal Ontario Museum's collection of ancient Egyptian artifacts .
Upon entering the museum, we were greeted by the hot sun of the African desert:
As we journeyed through the displays, we met many of the Egyptians gods and kings including this stone statue of Rameses (c.1250BC)  as a boy being watched over by Horus, the falcon god.
 Horus was said to be the god of the sky, and  was considered to be he holder of the sun and moon. The Egyptians believed that the sun was his right eye and the moon his left, and that they crossed the sky each day when he, a falcon, flew across it.

Camden has a fascination for all things "golden" and would list "sparkly gold" as his favourite colour.  Needless to say, these masks of gold were amongst his favourite items at the museum.  

After seeing a few full-sized sarcophagi, Camden was intrigued by the small size of these particular coffins.
"Are these toy coffins, Mommy?"
"No, Cam.  These boxes are for young babies who died during the time of the pharoahs. Back then, it was quite common for babies to die from sicknesses that we can easily take care of now. "
"Wow, Mommy! I am so glad I live TODAY in CANADA!"

Hieroglyphics have always fascinated me.  Of course, I can't read them(!), but the images speak so clearly of a time long past.

Camden was intrigued by the circular necklaces that everyone wore in all of the paintings that were decorating the museum. 
"Would they be heavy, Mom?"
"For sure, Camden- and likely made of pure gold."

And sure enough, right around the corner, we came across this golden necklace made of thousands of golden coins strung together in heavy circlets. 

And how about a VERY early version of Matryoshka dolls?
The body went inside the smallest box, then it was fitted into 3 more successive boxes before it was laid inside a pharaoh's tomb. 

Recognize this guy?  His face is the most famous one ever found in a tomb!

The intricacy of this painting and inlay is amazing.   The ancient artist must have worked for months fashioning these items made especially for the after-world.

A traditional Egyptian image shows the head and lower body viewed from the side, with the eye and upper body viewed from the front.
At first look, the figures drawn by the Ancient Egyptians may seem wooden and flat, demonstrating very little  understanding of the human form.
However, you need only look at their sculptures to realize that this is not the case. Their drawings are simplified images which show spirit of the character that they depict, and are quite really quite sophisticated images.

And here's my little Egyptian!
At first he refused to become a cute little Nefertari, but eventually he came around!
And I got in the game, too. 
I guess you can consider this one of the first selfies, shot nearly 3000 years ago!!

I hope enjoyed coming along on our museum visit today. 
Camden and I already planning a return trip for early May because by then, the Egyptians will have moved on and a slew of dinosaurs are dropping by!!
Can't wait!


  1. Brilliant! That looked like such a good day! I love ancient history. The Romans are my thing but Egyptians and Greeks are also fascinating. The details on the sarcophagi are amazing xx

    1. The Romans are my favourite too, but I think the Egyptians are a close second. Hopefully I'll get to Egypt in my lifetime - I'd like to see some of these things in their "homeland" instead of a children's museum. (However it was quite enjoyable with little dude in tow!)

  2. what a super day you had. I haven't been down to the ROM (I know you went a different museum) in ages.

    1. Go to the ROM ASAP - it always has so much good stuff. We are planning another visit for the beginning of April. The kids can't get enough of it!

      Thanks for popping by!

  3. It looks like a great exhibit and as though you had a lot of fun visiting it too! xx

    1. It was small but concise. Really, it was the perfect size exhibit for a kids museum. My other 2 kids wished they had come along. Next time I guess - for the dinosaurs!!

  4. The Egyptians are so fascinating aren't they? I love seeing any exhibit which contains the mummys and all the richness of that time.

    1. They really are. I like Roman history more, but the Egyptians just seem more exotic! Hopefully I'll visit Egypt one day - hubby and I have it on our list of "must-dos!"

  5. Great pictures! It seems so interesting!

    ❅ AJ


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