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The Middle Kingdom (ca. 2000–1700 BC) was the favorite period of Detlef Franke’s (24.11.1952–2.9.2007) he kept focussing on for most of his career. Based primarily on private documents from these centuries, he became the first in Egyptology to reconstruct the Ancient Egyptian kinship system as a whole, by also connecting the Egyptian system typologically with the ones known from cultural anthropology and other parts of the world. His range of research also encompassed studies on the specifics of Middle Kingdom kingship, administration, literature, chronology and the cult of Heqaib on Elephantine island.
Volume 41 of Philippika is dedicated to his memory by friends and colleagues and presents a collection of studies of material only recently discovered or fresh research on well-known subjects and inscriptions, most of them covering his “period”. Among these is a paper which Detlef started to work on with his latest student and which is here published as a joint venture project. Other ones deal with issues drawn from the Old or New Kingdom. His Egyptological bequest, including papers of his, notes and collections of data on officials from the Middle Kingdom etc. was transferred to the British Museum, London. There is also an announcement in this volume of how this personal archive may be accessed and used by colleagues interested in it.