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October 1, 2003

Author Elizabeth Peters to Discuss New Book on November 4

Elizabeth Peters (the pen name of Egyptologist Barbara Mertz), creator of the popular Amelia Peabody mystery series, will deliver the annual Judith Austin Memorial Lecture at the Library of Congress at noon on Tuesday, Nov. 4, in the Mumford Room on the sixth floor of the Library’s James Madison Memorial Building, 101 Independence Avenue S.E. The lecture, titled "Amelia Peabody’s Egypt," is free and open to the public. Peters will discuss her latest book, her beloved main characters the Emersons, and Egypt past and present. The lecture will be followed by a book-signing.

Under the pen name Elizabeth Peters, Mertz has written 15 historical mysteries set in Egypt featuring Amelia Peabody and Radcliffe Emerson, a husband-and-wife team of Victorian Egyptologists. In addition to the Amelia Peabody series, she has written approximately 50 thrillers under the pen names of Elizabeth Peters and Barbara Michaels. In real life, she is an expert on Egypt who holds a Ph.D. in the subject from the University of Chicago and is the author (writing under her own name) of two important scholarly works on Egyptology ("Red Land, Black Land: The World of the Ancient Egyptians," and "Temples, Tombs, and Hieroglyphs: The Story of Egyptology").

The beautifully illustrated "Amelia Peabody’s Egypt" combines the fictional world of the extended Emerson family and their friends with the archaeology of ancient Egypt’s temples and tombs. This extensive compendium explores the remarkable land of Egypt from the age of the pharaohs through the Napoleonic era to the first World War. Primarily set during the Victorian era, the work is also a window into the attitudes of the British Empire, as well as the customs and fashions of the time.

This lecture series was established by the Library’s Humanities and Social Sciences Division as a tribute to Judith Austin and her many years of service to the Library of Congress.

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PR 03-162
10/01/03
ISSN 0731-3527

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