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April 1, 2013

Coptic beauty

Figure 1: “Une Beauté Copte”(Coptic Beauty) by the Armenian photographer Georges Legrain.

In 1914, an interesting book was published, “Louqsor sans les Pharaons: légendes et chansons populaires de la Haute Égypte[1] (Luxor without the Pharaohs: Legends and Folk Songs of Upper Egypt) by Georges Legrain. The book contained 100 photographs of excellent quality. Georges Legrain (1865 – 1917[2]) was a French Egyptologist and writer.[3] He spent long years excavating in Luxor, particularly in the Temple of Karanak, and died in Luxor.


 Coptic beauty2

 Figure 2: “Louqsor sans les Pharaons: légendes et chansons populaires de la Haute Égypte” by the French archaeologist Georges Legrain (1914).


One of the photographs Georges Legrain included in his book is that of a Coptic girl, which he titled “Une Beauté Copte”(Coptic Beauty). This photograph, as the rest in his book, was taken by the distinguished[4] Armenian photographer, Gabriel Lekegian, who set up his studio in Cairo in 1887 (near the Shepherds Hotel), and was frequented by the rich and influential.

[1] Louqsor sans les Pharaons: légendes et chansons populaires de la Haute Égypte, recuellies par G. Legrain  (Brussels and Paris, 1914).

[2] Born in Paris and died in Luxor.

[3] Some of his publications, in addition to the book we are taking our photograph from, include:

i.            Jacques de Morgan; Urbain Bouriant; Georges Legrain; Gustave Jéquier; A. Barsanti, Catalogue monuments et inscriptions de l’Egypte antique, 3 volumes (De la frontière de Nubie à Kom Ombos, Kom Ombos), Wien: Wood-live, to 1894-1909.

ii.            Morgan, Jacques de ; Legrain, Georges, Fouilles à Dahchour, 2 volumes, Wien: Wood-live, 1895, 1903.

iii.            Legrain, Georges, L’aile north you pylône d’Aménophis III A Karnak (Paris: Leroux, 1902).

iv.            Legrain, Georges, Statues et statuettes de rois et de particuliers, 3 volumes, Le Caire: Imprimerie de l’Inst. Français d’Archéologie Orientale, 1906-1925, (Catalogue général des antiquités égyptiennes Musée de Caire).

v.            Friedrich Preisigke, Ägyptische und griechische Inschriften und Graffiti aus den Steinbrüchen des Gebel Silsile (Oberägypten): nach den Zeichnungen von Georges Legrain (Strassburg: Truebner, 1915).

vi.            Legrain, Georges, Les Temples de Karnak (Bruxelles: Vromant, 1929).

vii.            Legrain, Georges, Une Famille copte de strike Haute-Egypte (Brussels, 1945).

[4] He was awarded in 1892 the Gold Medal at the International Photography Exhibition in Paris; and, in 1893, the Grand Prize at the International Exhibition in Chicago.

2 Comments leave one →
  1. permalink
    April 1, 2013 2:28 pm

    Dear brother; I am in awe of your outstanding research and publicity about Coptic heritage. I will be honored by your participation in my program below. Please let us have a conversation. My cell phone is 310-766-8393. Today I am available from 3 to 9 pm California time. Coptic Civilization, LogosTV, Tue 2 April 2013, 7-9 pm (LA time) LogosTV Program on Coptic Civilization: Episode Topic: Celebration of St Mary’s Apparition in Zeitoun, 2 April 1968: Expressions of Coptic Civilization in adoration of St Mary. In Arabic: Tuesday 2 April 2013, 7-9 pm, California time (PST), and first Tuesday of the month. In English: 30 minutes per week. Will start soon. Via: satellite (Galaxy 19) and online at: Participation: You may call (818) 342-3388 with questions during the program. The program will also be re-broadcast (usually the next day and more later). This program is about Coptic life and civilization in Egypt and the Diaspora. What are the aspects of Coptic civilization and why it is still alive and well despite 2000 years of hardship. How the spiritual and cultural threads are weaved together. Please pray for the work of the Holy Spirit in this program, Logos TV, all churches, and all the peoples of the world. All blessings, Saad Michael Saad, Los Angeles

    • Dioscorus Boles permalink*
      April 2, 2013 10:02 pm

      Hello, Dr. Saad. I am sorry that I got this too late but thank you very much for your invitation and for your kind words. Perhaps in the future I can contribute a bit. Carry on the good work on LogosTV. DB

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