Candidate Profile

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Author / Writer
History - Classical
Peter A. Clayton, FCILIP, Dip. Arch, FSA, FRNS is an Egyptologist, archaeologist and numismatist who has excavated on sites in England and Egypt. A Fellow of the Society of Antiquities of London, a professional archaeologist and antiquities consultant. He is one of only two Honorary Members of the Institute of Archaeology, University College London. He has lectured widely in England, in most of the major museums and universities, and in Europe and Australia, on Egyptology, archaeology, antiquities and numismatics. A regular guest lecturer in Egypt and around the ancient sites of the Mediterranean several times each year since 1974 when he was recruited personally by Sir Mortimer Wheeler for Swan Hellenic Cruises, and subsequently on most of the major cruise lines. He is often called upon for live radio and television interviews on current archaeological or Egyptological topics, and has been featured in a number of commercially available educational and archaeological video programmes on British and American television.

He is the author of the international best-seller Chronicle of the Pharaohs, 1994 (reprinted 1996, 1998, and now available in 15 languages); The Rediscovery of Ancient Egypt (now in 5 languages); The Seven Wonders of the Ancient World (now in 12 languages), and a dozen other books on archaeology and the ancient world.

He is Expert Advisor for coins and antiquities to the Department for Culture, Media and Sport, the National Art Collections Fund, and the Heritage Lottery Fund, and acts as advisor to several departments in the British Museum and to many national and archaeological museums. He is a member of the Treasure Valuation Committee, The British Museum.

He was the Consulting Editor and Book Reviews Editor of Minerva, The International Review of Ancient Art and Archaeology, 1990-2010, which he founded in 1990 for the owner, Dr J. M. Eisenberg.

He is a Freeman of the City of London and of the Worshipful Company of Farriers, and a Liveryman of the Worshipful Company of Arts Scholars. He was a member of the Treasure Valuation Committee, The British Museum, 2006-2016.

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21 relevant to the Mediterranean, Red Sea and Egypt

1. Clear for Action ! Three Mediterranean Naval Battles that changed history: Actium, 31 BC; Lepanto, 1571; The Nile, 1798

2. Masterpieces in Miniature: Coins & History
How coins, often small masterpieces of art, record historical events, portraits of famous people from the past, even propaganda – the lecture shows in superb detail that there are often more than two sides, aspects, of a coin

3. Daily Life and Death on the Nile in Ancient Egypt
An overall view of Egyptian civilisation seen through the monuments, tomb paintings, sculpture and objects preserved in the Cairo Museum and other major Egyptian collections of the world

4, The Battle of the Giants: Greeks and Persians, Alexander the Great and Darius
The struggle that began the Hellenistic world that forms much of the basis of today

5. Greeks & Scythians in Black Sea. Colonies, Trade and Jason and the Golden Fleece
The setting of a legend and the archaeological evidence for it that revealed a new world to the Greeks

6. Knossos, Crete. The Truth and Archaeology in the Minotaur and Atlantis Legends

7. Mare Nostrum: Rome’s Empire and History
The outline history of Rome, the spread of its Empire from the Mediterranean seen through the monuments and archaeological evidence of finds, and how it formed the basis of our world today

8. To be a Pilgrim: Faith, History and the Archaeological Evidence
The major shrines of Christendom, the saints and their legends from the sites, manuscripts, pilgrim souvenirs and badges, and contemporary accounts

9. Rome in North Africa
The splendid archaeological remains and objects that formed the ‘bread basket’ of Rome and how it was acquired

10, The Seven Wonders of the Ancient World
What they were, why and how they were chosen and what remains of them today – many cruises often visit two or more, even very occasionally six of them

11. The Suez Canal: Waterway of History and Conflict
The history and story of the fulfilment of one man’s dream that has played such an important part in the modern world since it was opened in 1879

12. When Britannia Ruled the Waves: Trafalgar, 21 October 1805
The defining battle off the coast of Spain that made Britain the greatest sea power for the next 100 years

13. Finders, Keepers ? Treasure Trove Past, Present and Future
Treasures found in Britain, recent finds and the stories behind many and the effect of the Treasure Act 1996 that replaced Treasure Trove

14. Homer’s Iliad and the Trojan War in Greek and Roman Art and Archaeology
The tale of Troy, Homer’s Iliad, the greatest narrative poem ever written, and the events and episodes as recorded in sculpture, on mosaics, ancient painted pottery and coins

15. The Twelve Gods of Mt Olympus: Their Shrines and Legends
The twelve gods permeate the history of the Mediterranean and are seen through the sites closely associated with them and the evidence of archaeology and ancient objects

16. The Nectar of the Gods: The Wine Trade in the Ancient World
A broad survey through sites, sculpture, and pottery coins and other objects that advertised this most essential product of the ancient world and the cult of Dionysos

17. Ancient Egypt, Israel and the Bible. Faith and the Archaeological Evidence
The archaeological evidence and background for many of the events and people in the Old and New Testaments

18. The Valley of the Kings – Burial Place of the Pharaohs
An overview of the most famous cemetery in the world, its history, tombs, finds and the ongoing research there that is still producing new tombs

19. The Rediscovery of Ancient Egypt
A survey of the early days, discoveries and artists from Alexander the Great 332 BC to Sir Flinders Petrie (died 1942)

20. Jewels of the Pharaohs. What the Tomb Robbers Missed
Spectacular pieces in the Cairo Museum and other world collections and how they survived the ancient (and modern) tomb robbers, the stories of their discovery and an assessment of the craftsmanship of the ancient Egyptian jeweller

21. Skyscrapers of the Past. The Pyramids - Who Built Them, When and How
Amongst the most spectacular monuments of the ancient world, still enigmatic, subject of mysterious lore and claims, and hiding both the secrets of how they were built and what was and may even still be in some of them

22. 'He set the desert on fire'. T. E. Lawrence and the Arab Revolt
A legend in his own lifetime and who lives on as one of the most well known yet enigmatic figures of the First World War
Guest lecturer around the Mediterranean and Egypt since 1974 when personally recruited by Sir Mortimer Wheeler as GL on Swan Hellenic Cruises. Subsequently every year archaeological lecturer on all major cruise lines and widely in UK, Europe and Australia and universities. Author of over a dozen books on archaeology, many published internationally in up to 15 languages. Served 10 years on Treasure Valuation Committee, British Museum, archaeological advisor to BM and UK museums.
The following recent Cruise History has been recorded for this candidate.
Saga Sapphire SA305 Grand Mediterranean Voyage 31 Southampton Friday, September 23, 2016