Review – Lives of the Ancient Egyptians

Posted August 25, 2023 by Nicky in Reviews / 0 Comments

Cover of Lives of the Ancient Egyptians by Toby WilkinsonLives of the Ancient Egyptians, Toby Wilkinson

Lives of the Ancient Eygptians is not a particularly surprising book, if you’ve read about ancient Egypt in popular history books for a while, but it does take an interesting perspective: the span of ancient Egyptian history, represented as best as possible through the lives of 100 Egyptians.

That’s not many to do a lot of work, and sometimes they kind of clump together (Hatshepsut, and also people who worked for her, and also her family members), but mostly it manages to pick out — where possible — a range of people, including the poorer people who we have less evidence about.

In the end, it’s quite a simple version of Egyptian history, and there are many fascinating, controversial and enlightening facts and people passed over. Such a choice of format will always disappoint someone. I found it mildly entertaining and fairly readable, though Wilkinson is not (for me personally, at least) the most engaging writer. I don’t know what it is about his writing, but reliably, I find my attention drifting. Oops.

Rating: 3/5

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