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Artefacts from the lost cities of Thonis-Heracleion and Canopus on display

  • The cities of Thonis-Heracleion and Canopus lay undiscovered for over 1,000 years
  • The British Museum is now displaying recovered pieces from the Mediterranean cities.

Vanished beneath the waters of the Mediterranean, the lost cities of Thonis-Heracleion and Canopus lay at the mouth of the Nile. Named after the Greek hero Heracles, Thonis-Heracleion was one of Egypt’s most important commercial centres for trade with the Mediterranean world and, with Canopus, was a major centre for the worship of the Egyptian gods. Their amazing discovery is transforming our understanding of the deep connections between the great ancient civilisations of Egypt and Greece.

Franck Goddio/Hilti Foundation

Preserved and buried under the sea for over a thousand years, the stunning objects in the exhibition range from magnificent colossal statues to intricate gold jewellery. Sacred offerings and ritual objects reveal the cult of Osiris – the god of the underworld who held the promise of eternal life.

Franck Goddio/Hilti Foundation

They tell stories of political power and popular belief, myth and migration, gods and kings. Journey through centuries of encounters between two celebrated cultures, meeting iconic historical figures such as Alexander the Great, Cleopatra, Hadrian and Antinous on the way.

Franck Goddio/Hilti Foundation
Franck Goddio/Hilti Foundation

Over the last 20 years, world-renowned archaeologist Franck Goddio and his team have excavated spectacular underwater discoveries using the latest technologies. They will be seen alongside fascinating objects from major Egyptian museums for the first time in the U.K.

Tickets are now available to buy from the British Museum’s website.


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