Egyptology: The Middle Kingdom

Ref: C2420556

This course will explore a fascinating period of ancient Egyptian history. The Middle Kingdom is often seen as a classic period of arts, literature and culture in Egypt and we will study some of the great works of the time, placing them in their historical context. Historically we trace the emergence of the Theban 11th Dynasty who reunify Egypt, through the strength of the 12th Dynasty and briefly the decline of the 13th. We also look at changes in religious practice and Middle Kingdom art, architecture and temples – so often eclipsed by their more visible New Kingdom successors and provide a taste of the language and literature of the period.

Course aim

This course aims to provide a comprehensive synthesis of the Middle Kingdom of Egypt. A solid historical base will be enhanced with an introduction to the art, literature and building of the period.

Do I need any particular skills or experience?

  • No skills or experience needed
  • This course is suitable for beginners and improvers
  • This is part 2 of a 2-term course but is open to new students.

By the end of the course I should be able to:

  • Describe the tomb and temple of Nebhepetre Mentuhotep II
  • Discuss an example of literature from ancient Egypt
  • List at least three artefacts from the Middle Kingdom
  • Compare the First Intermediate Period with the 12th Dynasty
  • Read together with a sign list a king’s name in a cartouche

How will I be taught?

  • The sessions will include well-illustrated presentation with lots of opportunities for questions and interaction.

What kind of feedback can I expect?

  • Ongoing informal feedback, no tests or exams

What else do I need to know?

  • Pen and Paper will be very useful

Pre-course work, reading and information sources

  • No pre reading or pre course work is required
  • No pre reading is required but research on the subject on the internet or in the library may be helpful
  • Those new to the subject are recommended to read an introductory text to Egyptology, this can be prior to, or during the course as time allows.

What can I do next?

  • Progress to another WEA course
  • Progress to a course with another provider
  • Lectures with the Thames Valley Ancient Egypt Society, Egypt Exploration Society, Friends of the Petrie Museum and Essex Egyptology Group and others.

Download full course information sheet

Egyptology: The Middle Kingdom


As a registered charity, and to meet our funders’ requirements, we need to check a few things with you before you book. Please could we ask that you check the list below to ensure you meet our basic criteria:

  • You are paying the standard fee (with a credit or debit card) or you are on any of the qualifying benefits
  • You have a valid email address so that you can receive confirmation of your booking
  • You have been resident in the UK, EU or EEA for the last 3 years
  • You are aged 19 years or older on 1st September 2018
  • You have read and accept our standard terms and conditions

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