Archaeology

The Archaeology Collection contains items dating from the time of the Pyramids to Inverclyde's recent industrial past.

Ancient Egypt

The objects in the collection cover all periods of Ancient Egyptian history from the pre-dynastic Amratian culture of the Naqada period through the Old and New Kingdom dynasties to the Ptolemaic and Roman periods.

Mummy Cartonnage from Herakleopolis Magna
Mummy Cartonnage from Herakleopolis Magna
Copyright McLean Museum and Art Gallery, Greenock.

The collection contains examples of objects such as pottery, shabtis, amulets, scarabs in addition to carvings, stela and other funerary equipment. There is a small collection of pre-dynastic pottery from el Amra. The collection provides a good general selection of objects from many of the most important sites excavated by the Egypt Exploration Fund in the late nineteenth century. The sites include Abydos, Bubastis, Defenna, Deir el-Bahri, Dendera, Diospolis Parva, El Amra, Hawara, Herakleopolis Magna, Naukratis and Oxyrhynchus. The archaeologists involved in these archaeological digs were amongst the founding fathers of Egyptology and included Sir William Matthew Flinders Petrie (1853-1942) and Henri Édouard Naville (1844-1926). 

Greenock Coin Hoard

Read about the Greenock Coin Hoard discovered on the 19th May 1955 between Burns Road and Minerva Lane, Braeside, Greenock when a cow horn full of coins was found. Most of the coins were struck between 1543 and 1559 in the reign of Queen Mary. The hoard also contained testoons and coins from the reign of James VI. It is believed that the hoard was buried sometime in the mid 1570s.

Other Archaeological Material

The collection includes flints, hammer stones and other stone tools, amongst the more important items are a group of 10 Palaeolithic flint implements from Milton Street, Kent and Palaeolithic stone axes from Ireland. There are also Roman ceramic pieces and sherds with paving bricks and sandals. There is also an ancient horseshoe from Tarsus, a Carthaginian oil lamp and a votive tablet from Carthage bearing an inscription in Phoenician referring to the deity Baal Hammon.

There is also a small collection of material discovered within the borders of the Inverclyde area and includes industrial archaeology. The collection consists of items recovered from various sites within Inverclyde, in addition to various single items.

See thousands of images and records from the collections of the McLean Museum and Inverclyde Archives on our Collections Online website. Use the link on the left to take you there.

Page last updated: 25 May 2017