Thursday, 13 August 2009

Image 5 - Muhd es Said, Muhd Jafur, Muhd Timras

On age:
“The best age for diggers is about 15 to 20 years. After that many turn stupid, and only a small proportion are worth having between 20 and 40. After 40 very few are of any use, though some robust men will continue to about 50. The Egyptian ages early; and men of 45 would be supposed to be 65 in England. The boys are of use for carrying from about 10 years old; and they generally look mere boys till over 20. The ornamental man with a good beard is quite useless and lazy; and the best workers are the scraggy under-sized youths, with wizened wiry faces, though sometimes a well-favoured lad with pleasing face will turn out very good (Fig.13). In choosing boys the broad face and square chin are necessary tokens of stamina; and the narrow feminine faces are seldom worth much”. (Methods and Aims, 1904: 20-21)

“In European countries this use of boys is scarcely possible owing to the national education. In Greece as in England the boys are required to go to school, and their holidays there are not at a time suitable for excavating, while in England the holidays are occupied by the harvest” (Methods and Aims, 1904: 32).

1 comment:

  1. This quote is really interesting. Particularly the use of word 'ornamental' - does he mean a high ranking, religious leader - someone who does not do manual work?
    Also, does this link into his belief in race theories - also gender and race science - the feminized native. It could also be compared to writings by colonial leaders in Egypt. See, Roger Owen, Lord Cromer: Victorian Imperialist, Edwardian Proconsul, p. 354.

    Does Petrie ever talk about/refer to high politics in terms of Egyptian nationalism, self-rule, etc?

    Comment from Gemma Romain