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1894-95 el-Ballas

Type of fieldwork: 
Excavation
Season summary: 

Quibell led work in the Predynastic cemetery of el-Ballas, as well as a nearby settlement area:

  • Ballas cemetery contained about 883 graves. Although most of the graves werePredynastic in date (referred to incorrectly at the time as 'New Race' burials), there were also numerous Old Kingdom and Middle Kingdom burials as well. Artefacts were numbered in sequence, just as the grave simultaneously being excavated by Petrie's teams at nearby Naqada Main Cemetery were. Some, but not all, artefacts from Ballas were differentiated with a 'Q' for 'Quibell', but in other cases it can be difficult to distinguish finds from Ballas and finds from Naqada if they are numbered between 1 and 883. 
  • The settlement area was referred to as the North Town, but a few Middle Kingdom graves were found too and these were marked with a 'Z' before the grave number standing for Zoweideh.
Relevant archive holdings: 
London, Petrie Museum of Egyptian Archaeology
Distribution Notes: 
  • For some of the destinations listed here it is not clear whether the objects are from Ballas or Naqada, as similar matieral was recovered simultaneously from both sites. Moreover, as noted above, it can be difficult to distinguish finds from Ballas and finds from Naqada if they are numbered between 1 and 883. 
  • Two B-ware pottery vessels said to be from Ballas are looked after by the University of Cambridge's main library. These were formerly in the collection of Professor Herbert Thompson who recieved them from Petrie in 1895 and passed them to the library along with his collection of ostraca.  https://cudl.lib.cam.ac.uk/view/MS-THOMPSON-HT-00110/1
Relevant publications: 

Catalogue of a collection of Egyptian antiquities : discovered in 1895, between Ballas and Nagada ; exhibited at University College, Gower St., London, July 1st to July 27th. 1895.  London : Egypt Exploration Fund.

 Petrie, W. M. Flinders and J. E. Quibell 1896. Naqada and Ballas: 1895. British School of Archaeology in Egypt and Egyptian Research Account [1] (1st year). London: Bernard Quaritch.

Related excavations: 
Distribution destinations: