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A Huge Collection of Ramses the Great Artefacts Is Coming to Sydney's Australian Museum in 2023

'Ramses the Great and the Gold of the Pharaohs' will feature more than 180 rare artefacts, which will be leaving Egypt for the first time in more than 30 years.
By Sarah Ward
June 21, 2021
By Sarah Ward
June 21, 2021

If the pandemic hadn't hit, Sydneysiders would've been able to peer at more than 150 items from Tutankhamun's tomb this year, all without leaving town. So would've Australians visiting the Harbour City, too, because Tutankhamun: Treasures of the Golden Pharaoh was due to display at Sydney's Australian Museum in 2021 — until the events of the past 15 months or so happened.

While the King Tut showcase was sadly cancelled — with that news coming through back in March — the Australian Museum will still be diving into Egyptian history in the near future. Come summer 2023, the venue will play host to Ramses the Great and the Gold of the Pharaohs. This time, there'll be more than 180 rare artefacts on display, all connected to a different pharaoh, including animal mummies, royal masks, amulets and other golden treasures from the ruler's tomb.

Focusing on Egypt's third pharaoh from its nineteenth dynasty — a ruler also known as Ramses II, who reigned from 1279–1213 BCE — this showcase is set to be big. It'll be the largest collection of Ramses II items to ever leave Egypt, in fact, and will also mark the first time in more than three decades that items connected with the pharaoh have left their home country. So, as well as experiencing a slice of history, you'll be able to take a peek at objects that no one has seen outside of Egypt for 30-plus years.

Created by World Heritage Exhibitions and supported by Egypt's Ministry of Tourism and Antiquities, Ramses the Great and the Gold of the Pharaohs will also let attendees enter the ruler's temples — virtually, via the first walkthrough of its kind. And you'll be able to watch the first full-length documentary that's ever been made about Ramses II's tomb, too.

Grey Nurse Shark at Magic Point off Sydney, Eric Schlogel

The exhibition will receive funding from New South Wales' 2021–22 budget, as part of $40 million that's being committed to get major cultural exhibitions from around the world to come to the state in the next four years. Also nabbing financial support from the state government, and also coming to the Australian Museum: Sharks, which the site is developing itself. As the name makes plain, it's all about the aquatic animals, and it's set to display at the venue from winter 2022 until summer 2023.

"This funding will also help the Australian Museum to premier and globally tour one of the largest, most ambitious glimpses into sharks that any museum has ever produced," said Director and CEO of the Australian Museum Kim McKay AO. "The Australian and Pacific relationship with sharks is completely unique — we know them, we understand them, we live with them every day, and we're going to share this with the world."

Ramses the Great and the Gold of the Pharaohs will display at the Australian Museum, 1 William Street, Sydney, in the summer of 2023 — with exact dates and details yet to be announced. Sharks will display at the venue from winter 2022–summer 2023, with further details still to be announced. We'll update you with more information about both exhibitions when it is announced.

Published on June 21, 2021 by Sarah Ward
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