Egypt History of Exploration

Egypt History of Exploration

Leaving aside the information that the ancients could have had and that were handed down to us by historians and geographers of classical antiquity, we will limit ourselves to recalling how the systematic exploration of Egypt proceeded in modern times. Already in the Middle Ages merchants, missionaries and pilgrims who crossed Egypt to access the Holy Places left us more or less succinct and truthful descriptions, among which those of the Florentines Simone Sigoli, Renato Frescobaldi and Andrea di Maria Francesco Rinuccini are especially noteworthy. However, all of them limit themselves to talking about the Delta region and Cairo and do not go beyond the Pyramids. Only Luigi Roncinotto in his report also gives some information on Upper Egypt, where he is not sure that he penetrated. Copious information can be found in the description of Africa by Leone Africano, from which Livio Sanuto and Gastaldi drew for their descriptive and cartographic works. However, we must arrive at the end of the century. XVIII to have a general representation of Egypt based on personal observations collected during a long stay in the country, which was the map that the missionary Sicard built in 1722, who lived in Egypt between 1697 and 1724, collecting new illustrative materials, which remained for the most part unpublished. On the Sicard data, J.-B. d Anville built the paper that accompanies the work Mémoire sur l’Égypte ancienne et moderne etc. Paris 1766, which contains the critical examination of all the descriptive material of Egypt available in his time. For the period preceding the French expedition, the geographical literature of Egypt still contains some works, such as the travel reports of F. Norden, by Carsten Niebuhr, who was part of the great Danish expedition to Arabia (1761-1767) and which he found the Alexandria-Suez itinerary on astronomical determinations; by F. Volney, who traveled through Egypt and Syria in the years 1783-85, giving them a broad report, although of limited geographical interest. But especially the great expedition of Bonaparte and the French military occupation of Description de l’Égypte, 1809-1822) and a cartographic representation, based on regular astronomical-geodetic and topographic operations, in 50 sheets at the scale of 1: 100,000. During the French occupation, the journey from Cairo to Fezzān by the German Hornemann was also made, who gave us the first modern information on the oasis of Sīwah. Under the government of Moḥammed ‛Alī who extended the dominion of Egypt to the south, he resumed the exploration of the country with mainly archaeological intentions. We remember the fruitful journeys of the Swiss orientalist JL Burckhardt (v.) In 1812-14, along the Nile as far as Dongola; those of F. Caillaud (1815-1822), who scoured the oases to the east and west of the Thebaid and was in Sennār and Sīwah; by the Italians GB Belzoni (v.), B. Drovetti (v.) and G. Segato (v.), to whom reconnaissance is always mainly for archaeological purposes, but not without geographical interest, in the Libyan and Arabian Desert; of the Prussian general Egypt Minutoli, who was at the oasis of Sīwah at the head of a great expedition in which the Italian engineer Gruoc participated, especially in charge of astronomical and topographical observations. In more modern times and limiting itself to Egypt itself, we should remember the fruitful expedition led by G. Rohlfs and of which the astronomer Jordan was part of the oases of the Libyan Desert and that of G. Schweinfurth in the still unexplored regions of the Arabian Desert. oasis of Sīwah at the head of a large expedition in which the Italian engineer Gruoc participated, especially in charge of astronomical and topographical observations. In more modern times and limiting itself to Egypt itself, we should remember the fruitful expedition led by G. Rohlfs and of which the astronomer Jordan was part of the oases of the Libyan Desert and that of G. Schweinfurth in the still unexplored regions of the Arabian Desert. oasis of Sīwah at the head of a large expedition in which the Italian engineer Gruoc participated, especially in charge of astronomical and topographical observations. In more modern times and limiting itself to Egypt itself, we should remember the fruitful expedition led by G. Rohlfs and of which the astronomer Jordan was part of the oases of the Libyan Desert and that of G. Schweinfurth in the still unexplored regions of the Arabian Desert.

After the English occupation, the works carried out for the best use of the Nile waters for irrigation purposes resulted in reconnaissance and determinations which benefited the geographical knowledge of the Egyptian territory. In recent years, the trips to the Libyan Desert of Moḥammed Ḥasanein Bey, of Kemāl ed-Dīn Ḥusein (1923-1926) and others, which have brought new light on the oases of that part of the desert included in the administrative limits of the ‘Egypt. For Egypt history, please check ehistorylib.com.

Regarding cartography, the el-Gīzah Survey of Egypt (Survey of Egypt) has begun and continues the publication of topographic maps of Egypt at the scale of 1: 25,000, 1: 50,000, 1: 100,000 and 1: 250,000 conducted according to the most advanced methods and which satisfy every need. The topographical and physical, climatic and statistical elements of Egypt were elaborated for the construction of an Atlas of Egypt, in 31 large plates and explanatory text, published in 1928. A royal society of geography founded in 1875, an Institut d ‘ Égypte, whose origin dates back to the French occupation in 1798, and other scientific and economic institutions, provide with their work to the advancement of knowledge and. the illustration of the country under its various aspects.

Egypt History of Exploration