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Edith Guest

February 5, 2016

Calling all HARN members!

We’ve had an enquiry from Ana Avila Melo who is the curator of the archives of Museu Nacional de Arqueologia (National Museum of Archaeology, Lisbon) and the editor of the archaeology journal “O Arqueologo Portugues”. Ana says:

Last year I was helping a an archaeologist who was doing some research on the megalithic studies in Portugal during the the thirties of the 20th century, and we found documents about an english woman who excavated a megalithic tomb in Portugal. On the back of the photo was written only “Guest” we couldn’t understand if she was invited or if it was the name. The mystery was solved when I managed to link her to Margaret Murray and the Cambridge team who went to Minorca in the thirties. Our idea is to publish a paper on the subject because these two issues – women in archaeology, and the european archaeological network before the the war is not very well known. The problem is that it is very difficult for us to find information on Edith Guest biography and work. If you can help me, it’s wonderful. 
Thanks a lot,
Ana Avila Melo
So, can we help Ana? If you can then either comment below and I’ll pass it on, or you can email her directly – just follow the link
Have a great weekend
2 Comments leave one →
  1. Tim Champion permalink
    February 15, 2016 4:16 pm

    Edith Mary Guest was a qualified doctor who became a friend of Margaret Murray. She worked with Murray in Malta and Minorca, and is variously described as Murray’s friend and her assistant. Her role in the excavations is unclear (though the published reports may clarify it); she may have specialised in the human bones, and she taught osteology for Petrie’s Egyptology students at University College London. She contributed to a project in Cyprus and may have worked with Pendlebury in Egypt. She later followed Murray’s interest in folklore and wrote papers on the medieval female sculptures known in Ireland as sheila-na-gigs (papers in the Journal of the Royal Society of Antiquaries of Ireland). I have some detailed sources and references if Ana is interested.

    • Ana Avila Melo permalink
      February 20, 2016 3:21 pm

      Thanks a lot for your information. Of course I’m interested in all information available on Edith Guest. Unfortunately the Petrie’s Museum Archive can’t any useful information on her. Yours sincerely
      Ana Avila Melo

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