Published online by Cambridge University Press: 01 June 2021
On 16 May 1830, after several abortive attempts, Jean-François Champollion was elected to the Académie des Inscriptions et Belles-Lettres. Less than a year later, a decree of 18 March 1831, signed by King Louis Philippe I (1773–1850, r. 1830–48), created a Chair of Archaeology at the Collège de France. The chair’s inaugural lecture was delivered on 10 May before an audience of scholars and distinguished persons. The nomination had been prepared upon the return of the Franco-Tuscan expedition, but delayed by the overthrow of Charles X (1757–1836, r. 1824–30) in August 1830. The record of the inaugural lecture would prove to be another founding document for the discipline, in much the same way as had the Lettre à Monsieur Dacier, and it was published in 1836 by Jacques-Joseph Champollion-Figeac as the ‘Introduction’ to the younger Champollion’s Grammaire égyptienne.