QUANTITY MAY BLIND TRUE VALUE SAYS CHASE
Professor of Archaeology Here Warns Against Giving Too Much Significance to Recent Objects Found in Grave of King Tutankhamen
In an interview given recently to a CRIMSON representative, Professor G. H. Chase '96, J. E. Hudson professor of Archaeology, and Curator of Classical Antiquities in the University, declared that the fundamental importance of recent excavations in Egypt to art and science was likely to be greatly exaggerated because of the quantity of the objects found and their decorative quality.
"The great point of interest," Professor Chase said, "Is that in the tomb of Pharaoh Tutankhamen we see for the first time the funeral furniture of a royal Egyptian untouched and undisturbed. However", he continued, "the sort of objects usually placed in a tomb are striking rather than of deep significance, and observers are often led to undue praise because of the abundance of riches, rather than because of any deep artistic value in the finds. Although there is a possibility that the decipherment of the inscriptions found may reveal some long-desired historical records," stated Professor Chase, "the probability of this is not large, since the customary writings placed with the dead were only ritual forms and copies of the 'Book of the Dead'."
"To professional Egyptologists," he said, "the main significance of the discoveries as so far reported seems to be in the field of the minor arts such as decoration and designing, rather than in the realm of the major arts."
Professor Chase mentioned that all archaeologists are especially pleased in seeing Lord Carnavron's party so richly rewarded because of the many years of diligent research which it has carried on, and in conclusion said, "the explorers are working under the old law, which provides for the equal division of the objects found between the Museum of Cairo and the discoverer; a system which would seem to destroy any hope of maintaining the whole collection as a unit, which would be the only way in which it can keep its present importance as the complete funeral equipage of an Egyptian King".