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Synopsis

There is no country about which so many books have been written as Egypt; it might be supposed, therefore, that nothing more is left to say on the isubject. This however is far from being the case: much still remains to be discovered there; much of what has been already discovered still remains to be described. Not many travellers who have published books on Egypt have had a knowledge of hieroglyphics, and this fact alone has closed against them most interesting fields of knowledge. Finally, even things already described may be placed in new and interesting lights, just as the same pieces of glass in a kaleidoscope assume new patterns when shaken by different hands. There is plenty left to glean ; and as the thrifty Chinaman sifls the dross left by careless Australian diggers as worthless, and recovers many a grain of good gold that has escaped notice, so have I hoped to follow where Others have gone before, and still find new and interesting matters left to dish up for my readers. I have avoided as far as possible describing what has been described already, and what I have described is derived from personal observation. I have visited some places seldom visited, and not before described. I had the good fortune to discover a hitherto unknown tomb, which casts an important light upon an obscure period of Egyptian history. I have described for the first time the appearance of a tomb of great antiquity not before violated, and in which the mummies lie in their original position. I offer illustrations also never, I believe, before published of the mystic subjects of Egyptian mythology from the tombs of the Kings at Babel Moulouk. I offer drawings of the oldest known tombs in the world belonging to the third dynasty, sketched for the first time, and differing in a marked manner from the tombs even of the fourth dynasty which succeeded it. I also offer some very instructive portraits of Kings, Queens, Princes, and Chiefs.

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