Ancient Egypt, a thin sliver of green land in a sea of desert sand, has left us with an extensive history spanning more than three millennia. In this presentation, Dirk Van Tuerenhout, curator of anthropology at the Houston Museum of Natural Science, will review the great achievements that made Egypt so remarkable, and pause at the periods of adversity when natural and man-made forces plunged the country into chaos. While the desert provided ancient Egypt with a defensive buffer, the country did not always choose to live in 'splendid isolation.' Military actions abroad, as well as alliances with neighboring empires were important parts of Egyptian history. Well-known episodes of Egyptian history will be interspersed with lesser-known aspects of Egypt's past.