The mission of the Czech Institute of Egyptology is to conduct versatile and multidisciplinary research of the civilisation of ancient Egypt, drawing primarily on authentic sources obtained through the Institute’s own archaeological research. The scholarly focus of the institute includes also Egypt’s relations with the neighbouring regions of the ancient Near East and North Africa in Antiquity. A principal objective is to analyse the processes which led to the formation, growth and decline of the ancient Egyptian civilization and of the cultural and political entities directly or indirectly dependent on it in Egypt and South Palestine. This research is based on a number of specializations in the humanities as well as natural sciences and technical fields, with which the institute is in close contact. Major research strands comprise the emergence and development of the ancient Egyptian civilisation, the history of the ancient Egyptian language and scripts, the history of scientific thinking in ancient Egypt, religion and philosophical traditions, the Coptic culture, language and theology, Egypt’s relations to the Near East and Africa in late prehistory and ancient history. In addition, an important objective of the institute’s activities is to document and safeguard the cultural heritage of Egypt, which has played an important role in the development of the ‘western’ civilisation since antiquity. To a lesser extent, the institute conducts multidisciplinary research in northern Sudan, focusing on the development of the region in ancient times, especially in relation to the history of the neighbouring civilisation of ancient Egypt.
The Czech Institute of Egyptology (CIE) has a strong tradition of organising international conferences and workshops. The showpiece is undoubtedly the Abusir and Saqqara conference, organised once every five years since 2000 and attended by a large number of respected international scholars. Various aspects of the ancient Egyptian civilisation, including royal ideology, chronology, international contacts and diplomacy and the impact of the ancient culture on modern Egypt have also been the focus of congresses and workshops in recent years. The CIE also hosts upon request internationally renowned travelling conferences, such as the Tempeltagung or the Tagung zur Königsideologie.
The CIE publishes a wide range of scholarly publications, covering a large variety of aspects of the history, material culture and language of ancient Egypt. In its Abusir-series the CIE presents the results of the archaeological excavation in the Abusir necropolis of Egypt. The Prague Egyptological Studies (PES) periodical is a major platform for scientific articles in both Czech and English, the latter focusing on the Old Kingdom period. The most important archaeological discoveries of the CIE include the unfinished pyramid complex of King Raneferef, two 4.500 years old administrative papyrus archives, the intact tombs of the priests Iufaa and Neferinpu, the tomb complex of princess Sheretnebty with a large group of Old Kingdom statuary, etc. The CIE received on the basis of these discoveries awards from the Ministry of Education and the Charles University in Prague, while the discoveries were also covered extensively in the international media.