Émile Prisse d'Avennes

Achille-Constant-Théodore-Émile Prisse d'Avennes (27 January 1807, Avesnes-sur-Helpe 16 February 1879, Paris) was a French archaeologist, Egyptologist, architect and writer.[1][2][3][4][5][6][7]


Prisse d'Avennes was born in Avesnes-sur-Helpe, France, on January 27, 1807, to a noble family of French origin. After the early death of his father in 1814, on the guidance of his grandfather he enrolled at college a year later to train for a career within the legal profession.[8] Prisse d'Avennes decided to become an archaeologist in 1836 after a period teaching at the infantry school in Damietta.[9]

Life in Egypt

In 1827 when he reached Egypt, he was hired by the viceroy of Egypt, Muhammad Ali Pasha, as a civil engineer. He spent many years living as an Egyptian, adopting the name Idriss-effendi, learning to speak Arabic and practicing Islam. He stated that adopting Egyptian culture resulted in a greater understanding of Egyptian society and people.[10]

Oriental Album

In 1848, he contributed 30 lithograph images depicting the people living on the Nile Valley to a costume book titled Oriental Album written by James Augustus St. John who was a British author and traveler.[11][12]

Selected bibliography

See also


  1. [catalogue of exhibition Visions d’Égypte Émile Prisse d’Avennes (1807–1879),Bibliothèque nationale de France] retrieved 14:44GMT 25.9.11
  2. openlibrary retrieved 13:00GMT 24/09/2011
  3. A-Z&person=15153 (content unused in this article) retrieved GMT 12:46 24/09/11
  4. page 783 of Dictionary of the orientalists of French language François.Pouillon retrieved GMT 14:21 24/09/11
  5. (content of this link is currently unused within this article) retrieved GMT 14:28 24/9/11
  6. french language site retrieved 19:00GMT 24.9.11
  7. Copyright © 2009 Commune de Braives retrieved (approx') 18:50GMT 24.9.11
  8. André Monclus (p.40) & Jean Vuillemin (p.40)- Arts et Métiers Magazine - November 2002-Biographie de Prisse d'avennes rédigée par C.N. Peltrisot membre de la société archéologique et historique de l'arrondissement d'Avennes (published 1934) retrieved 15:03 25.9.11
  9. egypt.com-french language retrieved 19:00GMT 24.9.11
  10. Mercedes Volait. Surveying monuments in Egypt: the work of Emile Prisse d’Avennes (1807- 1879). Lecture given at the General Consulate of Egypt in Djeddah, 30 November 2013. 2013.
  11. "Oriental album. Characters, costumes, and modes of life, in the valley of the Nile. - NYPL Digital Collections". digitalcollections.nypl.org. Retrieved 2017-10-31.
  12. St. John, James Augustus (1795-1875) (1848). Oriental album, characters, costumes and modes of life in the valley of the Nile / illustrated from designs taken on the spot by E. Prisse. ; With descriptive lettrer-press by James Augustus St John, author of. London: Madden.
  13. online book catalogue retrieved 13:17 24/09/11
  14. forumrarebooks
  15. dkm160230-(Professor N.Poppe(Dawson:Egyptology)(approx')13:27 24/09/2011
  16. time of publication and times within scope of study retrieved GMT14:35 24.9.11
  17. dkm160230-(Professor N.Poppe(Dawson:Egyptology)(approx')13:27 24/09/2011
  18. text image and brief description retrieved GMT19:16 24.9.11
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