Eton possesses one of the world’s finest private collections of Egyptian antiquities, bequeathed by former pupil Major William Joseph Myers. Objects are used extensively in teaching boys at Eton and visiting children. They are also taken out to the classrooms of neighbouring schools as part of our outreach programme.
Myers first went to Egypt in 1882 as Aide-de-Camp to the General commanding in Cairo and soon became fascinated with Egyptian culture and art. His diaries, which are held in College Library give an insight into his life there.
Myers returned to Eton as Adjutant to the Eton boys’ CCF but later enrolled again in his old regiment to fight in South Africa. On 30th October 1899 at the battle of Ladysmith, Myers was shot and killed by a Boer sniper.
Items from the collection have been shown in New York, Leiden, Madrid, Bordeaux, and Japan and the Barber Institute in Birmingham.
The collection also contains objects from other cultures, including Near Eastern and Classical.