The stuff of myth and legend.
Their society thrived for over 3000 years in one of the most arid and harsh lands on earth. In a time of primitive life, when one’s main goal was to survive, the ancient Egyptians thrived.
As we studied this ancient culture, we grew to love and admire the people. We are clean romance writers. We love a character driven story, yet placing our novel in the depth of Ancient Egyptian culture gave us unexpected fodder for telling a story about a beautiful people and culture… romanticized of course, but highly based in fact.
And that left us with one question: Why aren’t more books based in Ancient Egypt??
Some of the most romantic things we learned about Ancient Egypt:
1. Their belief in their gods. This is something of which everyone knows, Ancient Egyptian’s were a gods fearing society and they, as a whole, held close to their religion. They practiced restraint and dedication. They lived their life with the afterlife in mind, so they lived in moderation and with purpose.
2. They had a great sense of humor. These were not stuffed shirts! They laughed about real things… even flatulence! I know, I shouldn’t have mentioned that, but think about the complexities, and the grounded lifestyles of a people who strove for greatness – desiring to live again with their gods – and yet were down to earth enough to write jokes about farts. It’s kind of a conundrum, isn’t it!
3. They loved beautiful things! Oh the beauty with which they surrounded themselves. A people who lived in parched land, sand and death on so many fronts, yet they wore elaborate jewelry, make-up, and clothes. They had exotic pets, built timeless sculptures, fashioned masterpieces out of dust and rock. They sang and danced and played instruments. They covered themselves with scented oils. They bathed four or five times a day and valued cleanliness.
4. They were ingenious. Medicines, herbs, math, written language, record keeping. The first 365 day calendar came from them. Their records were so detailed and correct that to this day scientists use their flood records of the Nile to do research! Can you believe it? They treated infections with moldy bread (amazing!). They forged one of the first peace treaties on record (with the Hittites).
5. Women’s rights. Throughout history in all societies and times, women have often been mistreated, neglected, and considered property rather than having any rights of their own. Not so with the Egyptians. Women had many rights, including the ability to buy, own, and sell land. They could work in some professions. And they could even initiate a divorce if the need was warranted. Girl babies were just as wanted as boys, unlike many of the cultures at that time.
Of course, as authors, we left some stuff out, like the fact that many people walked around with a glob of wax on their wigs that would slowly melt throughout the day and release pleasant scents. I mean, this was a romance novel after all. Who wants the image of a hero or heroine walking around with melting wax on their head! Haha. Not us! But when we were complete with The Scholar, we knew we would never look on Egypt the same. To us, they are dear, and forever will be.
A land of romance. A land of warmth. A people with a deep understanding of life and purpose. This is Ancient Egypt.
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