Wilkinson, Sir John Gardner, Dcl, Frs
Wilkinson, Sir John Gardner, D.C.L., F.R.S.
a celebrated English traveler and Egyptologist, was born at Haxendale, Westmoreland, Oct. 5, 1797. He was the son of the Rev. John Wilkinson and a daughter of the Rev. Richard Gardner. He received his education at Harrow School and at Exeter College, Oxford. He afterwards went to Egypt, where he remained twelve years, devoting himself to the study of the antiquities of the country and making himself acquainted with the languages, manners, and customs of the modern inhabitants. He resided a considerable time in a tomb at Thebes, and employed himself in making accurate surveys of the district and drawings of the superb architectural monuments, and in copying the sculptures, paintings, hieroglyphics, and other objects of interest then existing. In 1828 he published at Malta Materia Hieroglyphica, in four parts, and in 1835, in London, Topography of Thebes and General View of Egypt. In 1836 he began the publication of his great work, The Manners and Customs of the Ancient Egyptians printing the first series in 3 vols. 8vo., the second series, in 2 vols. 8vo, appearing in 1840. In 1843 he published Modern Egypt and Thebes, a new and condensed edition of which was published among Murray's Hand- books in 1847. In 1844 he traveled in Dalmatia and Montenegro, and in 1848 published Dalmatia and Montenegro, with a Journey to Mostar, in Herzegovina, and Remarks on the Slavonic Nations, etc. In 1850 he published The Architecture of Ancient Egypt, and in 1851 The Fragments of the Hieratic Papyrus at Turin containing the Names of the Egyptian Kings, etc. In 1855-56 he revisited Egypt, and on his return published Egypt in the Time of the Pharaohs. He presented his collections of Egyptian, Greek, and other antiquities to Harrow School fur the purpose of forming a museum, to which he added, in 1874, his valuable collection of coins and medals. In 1858 he published A Treatise on Color and the General Diffusion of Taste among all Classes. He contributed many of the notes to Rawlinson's Herodotus, and published papers in the Transactions of the geographical and archeological societies in Great Britain. He died Oct. 29,1875. A Memoir was published by his widow in 1876. Lord Ripon, in an address before the Royal Society of Literature, spoke thus of his great work on the ancient Egyptians: "Indefatigable in research, full of learning, accurate in facts, Sir Gardner Wilkinson has at the same time treated his subject with the enthusiasm of genius and the liveliness of poetry. He opens to you the temple of their deities, the palace of their sovereign, the field of battle, and the repositories of the dead. He traces for you their early history, he exhibits to you their knowledge of the arts and sciences, the course of their husbandry, and the process of their manufactures; and he introduces you to their private life with a graphic vivacity which makes you at once a judge of the virtues and vices of the Egyptian character, and a partaker, as it were, of the intimacies of their domestic society."