Promoting research, discussion, and debate about technologies used in Ancient Egypt

Posts by Peter Brooks

Scarab beetle infestation


When I wrote my article Signatures on the Stones for Ancient Egypt Magazine it forced me re-examine my photograph collection of the hieroglyphs on the Obelisk of Thutmose I to show the magnificent carving of the Apis Bull (the symbol for the God Ptah) on the serekh at the very top of the 30 metre high column […]

Giant circular saws

Ancient Impossible

There are hundreds of examples of saw cuts all over the ancient Egyptian sites, but there are only a few that have the most extraordinary feature of continuously-curved cut marks. The fact that these cut marks are on the extremely hard stones – granite and basalt – that make this story so intriguing and create […]

The Unfinished Obelisk at Aswan


No printed records exist of the technology that was used to cut the massive obelisk blocks out of the quarry bedrock at the famous Aswan quarry. The only tangible evidence we have is in the form of the tool marks left on the surface of the quarry face after the blocks have been removed, some […]

Carving hard stones with copper chisels is impossible


Look at this magnificent statue of the Pharoah Khafre that is in the Cairo Museum. It is life-sized and carved with the most intricate detail in a very hard stone called anorthosite gneiss. The museum guides, and the written text that the museum provides, say that the statue was made by hitting it with diorite […]

Know your stones


When looking at ancient Egyptian carvings, many people do not realise the differences between the types of stones and how very important that difference is. Huge monuments like Karnak, Luxor Temple, Hatshepsut’s Temple and even the tombs in the Valley of the Kings are carved in relatively soft sedimentary stone (typically limestones and sandstones) and are […]

BBC’s Immortal Egypt


If you are watching Immortal Egypt on BBC 2 on Monday nights you will see the eminent Egyptologist, Prof. Joann Fletcher showing you, but only in passing, many superb artifacts carved in hard stones while explaining the history of Egypt. On Monday 4th of January Joann was in the Kings chamber in the great pyramid […]

Ancient Egypt Magazine article


My article entitled ‘Signatures of the Stones’ has recently been published in the December issue of Ancient Egypt Magazine.

TV appearance on History Channel’s ‘Ancient Impossible’

Ancient Impossible

It all began with an unexpected phone call from a film company asking me if I would like to try and explain the ‘impossible’ cutting and carving of hard stones in Ancient Egypt – “oh yes” was my reply. I have appeared on BBC TV before when giving technical advice, so the time-consuming and frustrating […]