Alessandra Nibbi

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Alessandra Nibbi
Born( 1923-06-30)June 30, 1923
DiedJanuary 15, 2007(2007-01-15) (aged 83)
Oxford, England
Known forAncient Egyptians' seafaring skill, Discussions in Egyptology

Alessandra Nibbi (June 30, 1923 – January 15, 2007) was an Italian-born Australian archaeologist.


Born on June 30, 1923 in Porto San Giorgio, Italy, in 1928 she migrated with her family in Australia because of the political situation in Italy; Nibbi grew up in Melbourne with an English education.[1]
In 1947, after the war and the fall of fascism, Nibbi and her family temporarily returned to Italy, and here she got married. In 1963 she came again to Italy and during the journey she joined an excursion in Egypt, where she became fascinated by ancient Egyptian civilization at the point that once in Italy she started to study archaeology at the University of Perugia and later graduated at the University of Florence. Shortly after, Nibbi had to left Italy for Oxford, England. In 1969 she published the Etruscans-themed The Tyrrhenians, but a certain notoriety only came in 1972 with the self-published The Sea–Peoples: A Re-examination of the Egyptian Sources, in which she suggested that "the Great Green" mentioned in Egyptian records should not be identified with the Mediterranean Sea as usually done but rather with the verdant Nile Delta, and that ancient Egyptians were not as much a seafaring civilization as thought; at the time the book and the conclusions within were widely panned by mainstream academics.[1]
Since the journals started to refuse publishing her works, in 1985 Nibbi founded her own review, the still-running Discussions in Egyptology, on which she published her successive studies on ancient Egyptian geography centering on her reinterpretation of some narratives involving seafaring, such as the Story of Wenamun. In order to finding evidences for her claims, Nibbi excavated in various Egyptian coastal locations such as Mersa Matruh looking for anchors and other ancient naval technology.[1]

Alessandra Nibbi died on January 15, 2007 in Oxford, aged 83.[1]

Selected works[edit]

  • Nibbi, Alessandra (1969). The Tyrrhenians. Cowley: Church Army Press.
  • Nibbi, Alessandra (1972). The Sea–Peoples: a Re-examination of the Egyptian Sources. Oxford.
  • Nibbi, Alessandra (1975). The Sea Peoples and Egypt. Oxford: Noyes Publications. ISBN 978-0815550419.
  • Nibbi, Alessandra (1985). Wenamun and Alashiya reconsidered. Oxford: DE publications. ISBN 978-0951070413.
  • Nibbi, Alessandra (1985). Ancient Byblos reconsidered. Oxford: DE publications.


  1. ^ a b c d Claude Vandersleyen, Alessandra Nibbi - Obituary from the Griffith Institute website