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The Ancient Egyptian Collection

As part of its mission of outreach and community education, as well as to support the research and teaching missions of University of Memphis, the Institute of Egyptian Art & Archaeology, (hereafter IEAA), maintains a collection of over fourteen hundred ancient Egyptian antiquities. These artifacts are housed in the Art Museum of the University of Memphis. Approximately 200 of those objects, most ranging in date from 3800 B.C.E. to 700 C.E., are on permanent exhibition in the Egyptian Gallery of the Art Museum of the University of Memphis.

The Egyptian Gallery is OPEN.  

The gallery will be closed April 24 - August 19, 2017. 

Egyptian Gallery

History of the Collection

In 1975 a collection of forty-four (44) ancient Egyptian objects was obtained for the University of Memphis (then Memphis State University) from the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston through the generosity of Mr. E.H. Little, a prominent Memphis businessman. Since that time, and mostly through the generosity of private donors, the collection has grown steadily to its present size of over 1,400 objects. The collection spans the entire range of ancient Egyptian history and prehistory (ca. 100,000 B.C.E. through 700 C.E.). There are mummies, religious and funerary items, jewelry, sculpture, and objects from everyday life.

From its inception, the collection has served as an important teaching resource for students and faculty at the University of Memphis and throughout the Mid-South region. Students in such diverse disciplines as art, anthropology, history, classics, art history and education make use of the collection during their coursework. As part of the Master's Program in Egyptology at the University of Memphis, students may choose an item from the collection as the subject of their Master's thesis. In addition, scholars from all over the world contact the IEAA regarding objects in the collection.

Click here for additional information about the history of the IEAA.


Exhibit of Egyptian Artifacts

Approximately 250 ancient Egyptian objects from the permanent collection of the IEAA are on display in the Egyptian Gallery of the Art Museum of the University of Memphis. The museum is open to the public, free of charge, Monday through Saturday 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.

The Art Museum is closed University holidays and between temporary exhibits.

The most frequent visitors to the Egyptian Gallery are students from public and private schools in the City of Memphis and Shelby county. School children from Mississippi and Arkansas are also drawn to Memphis to view the ancient Egyptian collection.


Collection Research and Access Policy

Scholars and other individuals interested in obtaining access to the collection or images of objects in the collection should contact the Director or the Curator.

For information about collection access and permission to reproduce images of collection materials, please review the Research and Reproduction policies. The links are given below.

  • Obtaining access to the collection
  • Photographic permissions, rights and reproductions, etc.