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To celebrate Vikings Live, we have replaced our Roman alphabet with the runic alphabet used by the Vikings, the Scandinavian ‘Younger Futhark’. The ‘Younger Futhark’ has only 16 letters, so we have used some of the runic letters more than once or combined two runes for one Roman letter.

For an excellent introduction to runes, we recommend Martin Findell’s book published by British Museum Press.

More information about how we have ‘runified’ this site



The most important part of any archaeological project is that the results are published, so that scholars around the world can take account of the new information in their research.

This often takes a long time – as the mass of material can take years to process, study and interpret.

Final publication of Amara West will take many years, but here are some published articles on various aspects of the work so far:

M. Binder and N. Spencer, “The bioarchaeology of Amara West in Nubia: Investigating the impacts of political, cultural and environmental change on health and diet.” In: Fletcher A, Antoine D, Hill JD, editors. Regarding the Dead. London: British Museum Press, (2014), 123-136.

M. Binder and C.A. Roberts, “Calcified structures associated with human skeletal remains: Possible atherosclerosis affecting the population buried at Amara West, Sudan (1300–800 BC)”, International Journal of Paleopathology 6 (2014), 20–29.

M. Binder, C. Roberts, N. Spencer, D. Antoine, C. Cartwright, “On the Antiquity of Cancer: Evidence for Metastatic Carcinoma in a Young Man from Ancient Nubia (c. 1200BC).” PLoS ONE 9(3): e90924. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0090924 (2014).

N. Spencer, "Amara West: considerations on urban life in colonial Kush.” In Welsby, D and Anderson, J, R., editors, Proceedings of the 12th International Conference for Nubian Studies. 457-485, Leuven: Peeters, 2014.

M. Binder, “Cultural traditions and transitions during the New Kingdom colonial period and its aftermath – Recent discoveries from the cemeteries of Amara West” In Welsby, D. and Anderson, J. R., editors, Proceedings of the 12th International Conference for Nubian Studies. 487-503, Leuven: Peeters, 2014.

N. Spencer, "Insights into life in occupied Kush during the New Kingdom: new research at Amara West", Antike Sudan 23 (2012), 21–8

N. Spencer, with Sophie Hay, "Amara West: Remote sensing at a pharaonic town in northern Sudan", in Proceedings of the conference, Archaeological Survey and the City. University of Cambridge, 2013, 176-201.

P. Ryan, C. Cartwright and N. Spencer, "Archaeobotanical research in a pharaonic town in ancient Nubia", British Museum Technical Research Bulletin 6 (2012), 97-106. http://www.britishmuseum.org/pdf/BMTRB_6_Ryan-Cartwright-and-Spencer.pdf

N. Spencer, M. G. Macklin and J. C. Woodward, "Re-assessing the abandonment of Amara West: the impact of a changing Nile?", Sudan & Nubia 16 (2012), 37-43.

M. Binder, “The 10th-9th century BC - New Evidence from Cemetery C of Amara West”, Sudan & Nubia 15 (2011), 39–53. http://issuu.com/sudarchrs/docs/s_n15_binder

M. Binder, N. Spencer, M. Millet, “Cemetery D at Amara West: the Ramesside Period and its aftermath.” British Museum Studies in Ancient Egypt and Sudan 16 (2011), 47-99.

N. Spencer, ‘Nubian architecture in an Egyptian town? Building E12.11 at Amara West’, Sudan & Nubia 14 (2010), 15–24.http://issuu.com/sudarchrs/docs/s_n14_spencer

N. Spencer, 2014. ‘Creating and re-shaping Egypt in Kush: Responses at Amara West’, Journal of Ancient Egyptian Interconnections 6/1 (2014), 42-61. https://journals.uair.arizona.edu/index.php/jaei/article/view/18030

M. Binder, N. Spencer and M. Millet, ‘Cemetery D at Amara West: the Ramesside Period and its aftermath’, Sudan & Nubia 14 (2010), 25–44 http://issuu.com/sudarchrs/docs/s_n14_binder

N. Spencer, ‘Cemeteries and a Ramesside suburb at Amara West’, Sudan & Nubia 13 (2009): 47–61. http://issuu.com/sudarchrs/docs/s_n13_spencer

R. Parkinson and N. Spencer, ‘The Teaching of Amenemhat at Amara’, EA 35 (2009): 25–7

Further reading

Egypt Exploration Society

The Egypt Exploration Society excavations at Amara West were not published by its excavators, but two books on the architecture, pottery and graves have appeared, based on the old archives:

P. Spencer, Amara West, I: The architectural report. Excavation Memoir 63 (London, 1997)

P. Spencer, Amara West, II: The cemetery and the pottery corpus. Excavation Memoir 69 (London, 2002).

Historical background and context

In addition, the following recommended books provide a good introduction to the historical background and context:

D.N. Edwards, The Nubian Past. An Archaeology of the Sudan (London, 2004)

S.T. Smith, Wretched Kush: Ethnic Identity in Egypt’s Nubian Empire (London, 2003)