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The FAMB or French Archaeological Mission of the Bubasteion (Mission Archéologique Française du Bubasteion or MAFB) was founded in 1986 by Alain Zivie, research director at the National Center of Scientific Research (CNRS) with the French Foreign Affairs Ministry (now Ministère des Affaires Etrangères et du Développement International), assuring its leadership from the outset. In prior years, work at the Bubasteion fell within the general framework of the Mission Archéologique Française de Saqqara or French Archaeological Mission of Saqqara (FAMS)
But also entirely essential throughout this long adventure have been, of course, the close bonds forged at the start of the enterprise with the Egyptian Supreme Council of Antiquities (SCA), in the frame of the State Ministry of Antiquities founded in 2011. It has to do with a truly cooperative endeavor entailing both science and cultural patrimony, which could not help but grow in importance over the course of the years. The problems and the specific successes associated with this unusual site that is the Bubasteion no doubt partly explain this phenomenon. But there has also been something else: a state of mind. Therefore the Mission is grateful to all those, including the Ministers themselves and the highest officials, who have aided the MAFB/FAMB over the course of the years and continue to do so: directors and inspectors at Saqqara, who were, and are, the daily partners and interlocutors of the Mission, as well as all the experts, the technicians, the foremen (rais), and the squad of specialists in difficult missions who constituted the Egyptian part of our Bubasteion team.

During the excavation, so lengthy and strewn with pitfalls, of the tomb of the vizier and divine father ‘Aper-El, the Mission received technical assistance from the Faculty of Engineering and the Center of Engineering for Archaeology  of Cairo University, The Mission also had the benefit of valuable technical and human assistance from the major French construction and public work firms (and their Egyptian partners) that created and then expanded the Cairo Metro and the el-Azhar tunnels. The Mission of the Bubasteion also had, or has, connections with specialists working for various French scientific institutions, such as the National Institute for Preventive Archaeological Research (Paris), the Research and Conservation Center of the Museums of France (Paris), and the French Institute of Oriental Archaeology (Cairo).

Valuable support has also been given to the FAMB/MAFB in the past by the Fondation Martine Lyon, the Fondation Paribas, the Crédit Commercial de France with the Crédit International d’Égypte, Arjil & Associés Banque, Alcatel Egypt, BGI, along with the principal French construction and public works companies (and their Egyptian partners) working on constructing the El-Azhar tunnel and extending the Cairo Metro, in particular, the Vinci Company.

Occasional and regular members of the MAFB/FAMB since its foundation: Valérie Angenot, egyptologist
Miroslav Barta (Tchech Republic), egyptologist
Nathalie Bazoche (France), documentalist
Cécile Callou (France), archaeozoologist
Patrick Chapuis (France), photographer
Roseline Cottin (France), documentalist
Maria-Sole Croce (Italy), egyptologist
Michele Degli Esposti (Italy), conservator
Patrick Deleuze (France), topographer
Bruno Deslandes (France), architect
Sophie Duberson (France), conservator
Paul Dumas (France), physicist
Martine Fayein (France), radiologist
Fabrizio Finotelli (Italy), conservator
Carole Fritz (France), prehistorian
Marie-Geneviève Froidevaux (France), draftswoman
Léonard Ginsburg (France), archaeozoologist
Corinne Granger (France), documentalist
Jennifer Grapin (France), documentalist
Georges Hoffman (France), film director
Takao Kikuchi (Japan), egyptologist
Agnese Kukela (Latvia), documentalist
Véronique Larroche (France), draughtswoman
Roger Lichtenberg (France), radiologist
Anne Liégey (France), conservator
Eva Liptay (Hungary), egyptologist
Valéry Looten (France), conservator
Aleth Lorne (France), conservator
Catalina Manzanas (Argentina), conservator
Pauline Martinetto (France), chemist
Marta Mazzoli (Italy), conservator
Frédérique Noir (France), photographer
Marie-Agnès Pilipenko (France), documentalist
Claudio Prado de Mello (Brazil), draughtsman
Maria Diletta Pubblico (Italy), documentalist
Anaïck Samzun (France), archaeologist
William Schenck (USA), draughtsman
Maurizio Schneider (Brazil), documentalist
Valdis Seglins (Latvia), geologist
Isabel Simoes (France), documentalist
Pier Steensma (Netherland), draughtsman
Ana Tavares (Portugal), archaeologist
Gilles Tosello (France), prehistorian, illustrator
Pierre Veillat (France), engineer
Philippe Walter (France), chemist
Stéphane Zantein (France), engineer
David Zivie (France), photographer

The Bubasteion escarpment in 1992: entrance of the tombs
© Hypogées (P. Chapuis/MAFB)