John C. Darnell
Professor & Chair of Egyptology and Near Eastern Languages & Civilizations
John Coleman Darnell (B.A. 1984, M.A. 1985, The Johns Hopkins University; Ph.D. 1995, The Oriental Institute of the University of Chicago) joined the faculty of the Department of Near Eastern Languages & Civilizations as Assistant Professor in 1998. His interests include Egyptian religion, cryptography (see his recent The Enigmatic Netherworld Books of the Solar-Osirian Unit), the scripts and texts of Graeco-Roman Egypt (the study of which he pursued as a DAAD Stipendiat at the University of Cologne in 1985 and 1986), and the archaeological and epigraphic remains of ancient activity in the Egyptian Western Desert. The latter work has led him to his current interest in state formation, the use of rock inscriptions in the creation of "ordered" space, and the economic status of the oases and the desert regions, particularly from the late Old Kingdom through the Third Intermediate Period.
Darnell has considerable field experience in Egypt. After working on the staff of the Demotic Dictionary Project in Chicago, in 1988 he joined the Epigraphic Survey of the Oriental institute, based at Chicago House in Luxor, Egypt. Before leaving the Epigraphic Survey as Senior Epigrapher in 1998, to take up his current duties at Yale University, he had helped to collate over three-quarters of the epigraphic copies now published in the first two volumes of the Reliefs and Inscriptions at Luxor Temple series, had co-authored the commentary volumes for those volumes, and had worked extensively at Medinet Habu.
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