In Memoriam:
Dr. Geoffrey J. Tassie

 

On Thursday 28 March 2019, ECHO lost our beloved friend and colleague Dr. Geoffrey J. Tassie, affectionately known as Tass.

Tass served as ECHO's Co-founder and Managing Director for more than 20 years, working to disseminate knowledge about Egyptian cultural heritage and thereby ensure its accessibility to all. His years of work in both the field and lecture hall have contributed immeasurable insight into Ancient Egypt.

KHD

Tass's earliest projects included the Supreme Council of Antiquities (SCA)-University College London (UCL) Mission to Kafr Hassan Dawood (KHD), where he served as Site Supervisor under the direction of Prof. Fekri Hassan. He would eventually serve as Director for the SCA-Winchester University-Egypt Exploration Society Mission to KHD, where he oversaw site analysis of pottery, stone vessels, small finds, potmarks and graves, along with the development of a site typology of all artefacts. He recently secured permissions to resume excavations at the site, which will continue to expand the narrative at KHD.

Tass's later work would reunite him with Fekri Hassan and Mohamed Hamdan, with whom he also worked at KHD, for the UCL Environmental Change and History of Water Management in Egypt's Faiyum Depression, alongside Dr. Roger Flower. While Tass's research at the time concerned Ancient Egyptian hairstyles, he soon revealed a comprehensive knowledge of the area and became a key member of the project; his contemporary comparative assessments of archaeological sites in the Faiyum would be the first depression-wide survey using a standardised protocol.

In August 2018, Tass successfully managed to resume work for the first time in 32 years at the site of Nubt (Naqada) in Upper Egypt with Joanne Rowland and Joris van Wetering, his partners in crime of many years. This was a lifelong dream happily realized that will continue to see growing awareness of the importance of this site amongst the local people and wider public, as well as protecting it for future generations.

Naqada 2018

Additionally, Tass has conducted research at the Freie Universitat Berlin, as part of a University of Edinburgh Project, and was an honorary research fellow at the University of Winchester, and lecturer at the School of Oriental and African Studies. He has published widely on Predynastic Egypt, Egyptian adornment (including hair and body decoration), Egyptian cultural heritage, heritage management and archaeological theory. He most recently joined Cairo's Grand Egyptian Museum (GEM) as a distinguished expert in Predynastic Egypt, social theory and Egyptian cultural heritage.

While Tass leaves us far too soon, we are grateful for his passion, devotion, knowledge, generosity and friendship, all of which he shared freely. His impact on the archaeological and Egyptological communities cannot be overstated, and his memory will live on through the work of his dearest friends and colleagues.

Farewell, old friend ... thank you for the adventure.

Research Projects

  • Kafr Hassan Dawood (KHD) Archaeological Project, 1995-1999 (University College London, Institute of Archaeology - Supreme Council of Antiquities), and KHD Archival Research, 1999-2019
  • Socioeconomic Transformations in North-east Africa from the Last Gslacial Maximum to the Neolithic, 24,000 to 6,000 Cal BP
  • Minufiyeh Archaeological Survey, Central Delta, Egypt
  • Imbaba Governorate Prehistoric Survey, Egypt
  • The Naqada Regional Survey, Excavation and Cataloguing Project, London, England
  • Slaughterbridge Medieval Excavation Project, Camelford, Cornwall, UK
  • Cultural Heritage Management of Qatar
  • University of Durham - Egypt Exploration Society Mission to Sa el-Hagar (Sais), Central Delta, Egypt
  • The Alexandria Mapping Project, West Delta, Egypt
  • University College London Leverhulme Project on People and Climate in the Faiyum, Egypt
  • Southern Sinai Regional Survey
  • British School of Archaeology Jerusalem - Tel Aviv University Mission to Tel Jezreel (Iron Age city, Byzantine city, Crusader settlement and church and Chalcolithic settlement), Israel
  • Sussex Archaeological Unit Excavations at Beddingham Roman Villa Sussex, England

Selected Publications

  • Tassie, G. J., 2014. Prehistoric Egypt: Socioeconomic Transformations in North-east Africa from the Last Glacial Maximum to the Neolithic, 24,000 to 6,000 Cal BP. London: Golden House Publications.
  • Tassie, G. J. & Owens, L. S., 2010. Standards of Archaeological Excavation; A Fieldguide to the Methodology, Recording Techniques, and Conventions. London: Golden House Publications.
  • Hassan, F. A., Tassie, G. J., De Trafford, A., Owens, L. S. & van Wetering, J. (eds.), 2009. Managing Egypt's Cultural Heritage: Proceedings of the First Egyptian Cultural Heritage Organisation Conference on Egyptian Cultural Heritage Management. London: Golden House Publications.
  • Hassan, F. A., Tassie, G. J., De Trafford, A., Owens, L. S. & van Wetering, J. (eds.), 2015. The Management of Egypt's Cultural Heritage, Vol. 2. London: Golden House Publications.
  • De Trafford, A., Tassie, G. J., van Wetering, J. & El Daly, O. (eds.), 2018. A River Runs Through It: Essays in Honour of Fekri A. Hassan, Vol. 1. London: Golden House Publications.



 

Current Affairs

 

The Trustees of ECHO are sad to announce the loss of our beloved friend and colleague Dr. Geoffrey J. Tassie, affectionately known as Tass.


There has been and continues to be illegal encroachment on the UNESCO World Heritage Listed site of Dahshur. The Trustees of ECHO are supporting this petition to try and stop this illegal building activity and so can you, please sign the petition


The ECHO trustees are pleased to announce that ECHO is now a registered charity (number 1142484) this will enable ECHO to continue and develop into the future.


ECHO is now on Facebook


ECHO article detailing the endangered sites in the Faiyum is now available to download as a PDF


Protection of Cultural Heritage in Revolutionary Times: The International Workshop on Prevention of Destruction, Looting and Theft of Cultural Heritage. Cairo, September 2012.
Call for Papers


New Nubian Dams are planned by the Sudanese Government, none of which have the consent of the local population who will be the ones most affected.
Sign the petition to stop the building of these dams



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