domingo, 15 de julio de 2012


p. esfinges.Karnak 
                            Temple-remains at Elephantine. Bonomi MSS. folder F.4.

                         A fragment of the sarcophagus of King Ay. Bonomi MSS. folder D.
                                          kiosko de Trajano. Philé

An architectural drawing, a colonnade, perhaps at Qurna. Bonomi MSS. folder D.4.

 Joseph Bonomi (1796-1878) was a draughtsman and traveller who worked in Egypt with some of the best-known scholars of the first half of the 19th century, such as Robert Hay, James Burton, E.W. Lane, Sir John Gardner Wilkinson, and Ippolito Rosellini. He was a member of Richard Lepsius's expedition in 1842-4. He was appointed Curator of Sir John Soane's Museum in 1861.
source: griffith

sábado, 14 de julio de 2012

"The Arts And Crafts Of Ancient Egypt" cap.IV e

by W. M. Flinders

Figures in the round are the earliest mode of modelling, and remain the most important, as they are less conditioned than reliefs, and give full scope to ability and knowledge. The earliest human figures are found in the second stage of the prehistoric age, immediately after the white-lined pottery. They are of ivory, limestone, slate, pottery, or of stick and paste. Such figures did not continue to be made after the middle of the prehistoric civilisation. The ivory figures usually end in a mere peg below, with wide hips and shoulders, but no arms. The eyes are marked, though often the mouth and nose are omitted (fig. 15). The limestone or cement figures have the division of the legs lined out; some are standing, as fig. 16, with tatu marks painted on the stone; others are of the armless form, seated, and clearly of the steatopygous Bushman type. The slate figures are always of men, with pointed beards, and white beads inserted for eyes. The pottery figures are roughly modelled, but with the legs separated. The stick and paste figures are made by modelling a vegetable paste over a stick; the legs are marked, sometimes arms are added, or else there are merely shoulder stumps. In one case the head is modelled bald, painted red, and has a black wig modelled over it, showing that separate wigs are as old as the prehistoric time. Some ivory tusks are carved with a much more advanced style of heads (fig. 17), which give the best idea that we have of the type of the people. The animal figures are rudely cut, but have a certain ferocious air (fig. 18).
Some much more advanced figures in ivory have the legs and arms separate, and a passable amount of modelling in the head and body. Though quite of prehistoric style, they are probably influenced by the school of highly developed ivory-work of the 1st dynasty, and may shortly precede that time.
The early dynastic age brought in entirely new ideals. The oldest figures of this time are the colossal statues of the god Min from Koptos. These are of much the same work as the prehistoric human figures, but have spirited drawings of animals incised on them (see fig. 51). Just before the 1st dynasty there came a finely developed style of ivory-carving, which is known to us by the many figures of men and women found at Hierakonpolis. The finest stone-work of that age is a study in limestone of a king's head (figs. 19, 20), which is so closely like Narmer (fig. 54) that it must be just at the beginning of the 1st dynasty. It is a sculptor's study of a king preparatory to making his statue, and, as Professor A. Michaelis says, "it renders the race-type with astounding keenness, and shows an excellent power of observation in the exact representation of the eyes." The delicacy of the facial curves should be noticed, and the entire absence of any conventions in the modelling of the mouth as well as the eyes. The widely prominent ears are a characteristic of the earliest historic figures; such a feature belongs to a hunting race who need to catch sounds, and suggests that they always slept on their backs. This is unlike the prehistoric folk, who were always buried contracted and lying on the side, as being their natural attitude; but it agrees with the modern Egyptian, who sleeps in the mummy posture, lying on the back.
The Statuary 15 The Statuary 16 The Statuary 17 Prehistoric figures in the round Prehistoric figures in the round.
A large number of ivory figures were found at Abydos, fully developed in style, beyond those of Hierakonpolis. They comprise figures of girls, boys, dogs, apes, a bear, and many lions. They are admirably easy in their pose, and perfectly natural in form with a simplicity and truthfulness better than any later work. The figure of an old king (fig. 21) was with these; notice the subtle expression of the face, the droop of the head forward, and the natural air. This is probably early in the 1st dynasty.
Rather later is the hard limestone head of King Kha-sekhem, of the Ilnd dynasty (fig. 22). Fine as the modelling is about the mouth, yet convention has already crept in; the edges of the lips are sharpened, and the extended line at the outer corner of the eye has been introduced. We see then under the earliest dynasties the observation of Nature free from any artificial trammels,unconscious, simple and dignified, on a higher plane of truthfulness and precision than is found in later art.
In the pyramid age we will first observe the earlier private figures (23 to 26). Queen Mertitefs (fig. 23) was the wife of Seneferu, at the close of the IIIrd dynasty. In her type of face, and the treatment of it, we see an earlier race and earlier work than that of the pyramid times. The large, staring eyes, the mouth turning down, the natural hair cut short and brushed straight down over the forehead beneath the wig, - all these details disappear after this. When we compare this with the head of Nofert (fig. 24), who was of the next generation, the change of type and work is at once seen. In Nofert the eyes are admirably placed, the brow is perfectly natural, and the modelling of the features is irreproachable. Yet there is less absolute naturalism than in the older work of the 1st dynasty. The hair is evidently kept complete beneath the wig, and is laid out smoothly over the forehead.

Earliest Dynasties

19, 19, 20. 1st dynasty king, limestone 21. 1st dynasty king, ivory 22. Khasekhem (Ilnd dynasty) 19, 20. 1st dynasty king, limestone.
21. 1st dynasty king, ivory.
22. Khasekhem (Ilnd dynasty)

Old Kingdom Sculpture

23. Mertitefs 24. Nofert 23. Mertitefs.
24. Nofert.

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"The Arts And Crafts Of Ancient Egypt" cap.IV d

by W. M. Flinders

 The Statuary  d
The celebrated figure of Ka-aper, or the "Sheykh el Beled," belongs to the same period. The figure is so well known that it need not appear here, but the full face is less familiar (fig. 25). The mouth and chin are perhaps the most truthful part, and seem entirely free from convention. The eyes are excellent in form, but affected by the technical detail of inserting the eyeball of stone and crystal in a copper frame. The similar eyes in the head of Nofert are more carefully inserted, so that the frame is not obvious. The hair is represented as closely cut, so as to allow the wig to be put over it. We can, however, hardly judge of this figure as it is, stripped of the coat of coloured stucco which covered such work. The portions of similar wooden figures in the temple of Abydos had all been thus painted. Such a coat would modify the eye setting, and leave only the dark line visible which imitated the kohl on the eyelids.
25. Ka aper 26. Unknown 25. Ka-aper.
26. Unknown.
Another work of the same age is the best for the pose of the figure (fig. 26). The vigorous, independent, frank attitude is perhaps the finest in any portrait, ancient or modern. The profile is of the same type as that of Nofert, alike in the strong brow and the form of the nose and chin; the eye is more prominent, and the mouth less luxurious, while the under-chin is firmer. Such differences are all in keeping with the character, that of an active mistress of an estate rather than an easy-going noble.
We shall not find in any of the subsequent work of the pyramid age - still less in the later ages - such vitality and strength of individual character as we have seen in these early portraits. With these stands also the minute head of Khufu (fig. 123), which we shall notice with the ivory-work.
The statue of Khafra (fig. 27) carved in diorite is one of the grandest works of Egypt. The entire dignity and majesty shown contrast strongly with the active air of the subordinate classes. The muscular detail is powerful, but yet in keeping with the serenity of the figure. The whole is best grasped from below, as it was intended to be seen; but the head should be studied at its own level, and the profile, from a cast (fig. 28), shows the form as it originally appeared when covered with a facing which concealed the grain of the stone. The difference of character between the calm, easy dignity of this, and the terrible energy of Khufu (fig. 123), should be observed. It shows how free the art is from any mere convention of majesty. The hawk behind the king is shown as spreading out its wings to protect the royal head. This symbolism is ingeniously hidden in the front view, so as not to interfere with the effect of the whole figure as it was intended to be seen. The figures of the Vth and Vlth dynasties have more vivacity than those earlier, but scarcely such a real vitality. The well-known scribe (fig. 29) is a good piece of expression, showing the attentive, waiting air of a man who is following dictation. The anatomy is not detailed, and the surfaces look rather blocked out and bald as compared with Khafra.
27, 28. King Khafra (IVth dynasty) 27, 28. King Khafra (IVth dynasty)
29. The scribe. 30. Wife and daughter 31. Ranofer 29. The scribe.
30. Wife and daughter.
31. Ranofer.
The lower part of a group is given here (fig. 30) for figures of the seated wife and daughter. These show good modelling of the figure in a close-fitting garment, and the hair is worn over the forehead beneath the wig, as by Nofert. The figure of Ranofer (fig. 31) is one of the most dignified of the portraits of officials. The pose is strong; the muscles are well rendered, and not too full though clear. The wig stands well off the head, and gives a continuous outline with the figure. It is hard to see how the whole expression could be better than this.
On looking closely at the detail of these early-statues, there is very little that can be set down as conventional. All the features are natural, well placed, and harmonious. The relation of the brow to the eyes is generally true. But this point was entirely missed in later times. In the XIIth dynasty the eye is rather too forward; and in the XVIIIth there is hardly a single statue that is correct, the eyes usually projecting to the plane of the brow. On observing even the finest figures of later times it will be seen how purely conventional is their treatment; the mouth and eyes are cold and mechanical, and it is seldom that any one feature even approaches the truth of the early art.
In the XIIth dynasty the work shows the scholastic style of deliberate accuracy, without as much personal vitality as in earlier times. Yet it is full of carefully observed detail, and is by no means perfunctory like the later work.
The facial surfaces are well rendered: observe the varied treatment of the cheek below the eye in figs. 32, 33, and 35, which are clearly individual. The entirely different form of the mouth in these three is as evidently personal. Throughout Egyptian work the eye is of two distinct types, both of which we see here in the XIIth dynasty. In one type (fig. 32) the upper lid rises to its highest point near the inner side; and with this form the actual corner, or canthus major, may end in a mere angle or in a lachrymal fossa more or less developed, an extreme case of the long and wide fossa being seen in fig. 32, and in the black granite figure from Alexandria (so-called Hyksos) in Cairo. This may be called the gibbous form of lid, and it is the more usual in the sculpture and on coffins. The use of a copper frame round the inserted eye in Old Kingdom statues makes it uncertain how far the lachrymal fossa was intended to appear. But the statues of a single material show a small fossa in most cases, such as Khafra, Dadefra, the (so-called) wife of the Sheykh, and Sebekhotep III. In later work there is no fossa, but only an angle, as in Tahutmes III, Amenhotep III, Amenhotep son of Hapi, and other instances to the end of the dynasties. But a slight fossa is shown in Akhenaten and his family, and in Ramessu II; and, under the Ethiopians, Taharqa and Amenardys are both shown with a long fossa.

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"The Arts And Crafts Of Ancient Egypt" cap.IV c

by W. M. Flinders
 The Statuary. part c

The other type of eye seen in figs. 33, 35 may be called the narrow eye. This seems to belong mainly to the Middle Kingdom, and is seen in Senusert III, Amenemhat III, Queen Nofert, and Noferhotep. It is perhaps unknown at an earlier age; and later it rarely occurs, but may be seen in Merenptah, and somewhat in Mentu-em-hat and some portraits of the XXVIth dynasty. These remarks are merely to draw attention to a detail which is easily observed and seldom defaced; but for drawing conclusions an extensive study is needed of all the varieties of form and treatment, not only of the eye, but also of the lips, nostrils, ears, and hair. How far such detail belonged to the subject, and how much is due to artistic conventions, we cannot yet say; but from the similarities of portraits of the same person it seems probable that the details are really due to differences of type.
We now have a very difficult question to state as to the origin of the remarkable type of fig. 34. This is one of the class of sphinxes and statues commonly described as being of the Hyksos. Yet, as the Hyksos kings' names are roughly cut on the shoulders of the sphinxes, they are clearly not the original inscriptions; and, as clearly, these figures are older than the Hyksos. The type is distinguished by an extreme muscularity of the face, deeply cut, powerful lips with strong flexures, and the long nose, not very prominent, but broad. All these points are much in excess of such features on any statue of a named Egyptian king. Some similarities may be seen in the type of Senusert III and Amenemhat III (figs. 33, 35); but these latter are much less strong and unconventional. It is probable that some of the stock of fig. 34 has gone to form the type of figs. 33 and 35, but it is impossible to see in them a uniform single type. It seems most probable that fig. 34 belongs to an invading people from Syria during the decadence of the Old Kingdom, between the VIIth and Xth dynasties; but until some example with an original name may be found, it is useless to be more definite. It is noticeable how all of the heads of this type are in black granite, or rarely some other igneous rock; this suggests that they were wrought by the school of the eastern desert, and may therefore not be controlled by the decadence of ordinary Egyptian work between the Old and Middle Kingdoms.

Middle Kingdom Sculpture

32. Senusert I 34. Foreign type 32. Senusert I 34. Foreign type.
33. Senusert III 35. Amenemhat III. 33. Senusert III 35. Amenemhat III.
Whether other strange works in black granite - such as the fish-offerers of Tanis - belong to the same age, has been questioned. It may be noted, however, that the sphinxes and the black granite bust from Alexandria have a large lachrymal fossa, while the fish-offerers have no fossa, but only an inner angle to the eye. The so-called Hyksos figures from Bubastis are not really of this type, but show an inheritance of some of its characters, such as belong to the royal family in the XIIth dynasty. Whenever the royal portraiture of the Xllth dynasty is fully collected and studied, it will be possible to clear the attribution of many statues, and so to separate those which really belong to the earlier stock.
On coming to the XVIIIth dynasty a more mechanical style prevails (figs. 36 - 39). This is obvious in the formal raised band of eyebrow, and the eyes being brought forward to the plane of the forehead. The lips remain more natural, and are still treated expressively. The best work of this age is the green basalt statue of Tahutmes III in Cairo (fig. 37). It accords closely with another figure of black granite of the same king; but the red granite head in the British Museum is much coarser and less expressive, as is natural from that school of granite work. The large nose is vouched for as a family characteristic in the reliefs of Tahutmes II and Hatshepsut at Deir el Bahri, which have precisely the same outline of brow and nose; the under-side of the nose, the slightly rising curve of the lips to the outer corner, and the flatness of the facing of the lips, seem to be individual details.
The head fig. 36 is of an official of Amenhotep III, in quartzite. It has a fairly good outline of the cheek, and well-cut lips; and it shows the more florid and romantic turn of this age in the wavy hair marked out with lines.
Under Akhenaten (fig. 39) there came a revolution of art, which was perhaps only a culmination of the naturalistic tendencies that were growing during the preceding reigns. But it was enforced and supported by the surrounding changes in religion, ethics, and politics which were carried out by the humanist reformer who ruled. It was probably also stimulated by the influence of the contemporary art of Crete and Greece, the whole eastern Mediterranean apparently sharing in a general movement. We shall notice this further when considering reliefs and painting. Of round sculpture the best figure remaining is that of Akhenaten now in Paris (fig. 39). It has been part of a group of the king and queen sitting together, and it shows all the characteristics of this school in the best form. The eyes are quite natural; the lips are emphasised by a sharp edge along their borders; the jaw and neck are excellently rendered; and the ear, with its large pierced lobe, is clearly true to life.
Though the reforms of Akhenaten mostly perished with him, yet the training of his artists is still to be seen in the sculpture of Tut-ankh-amen (fig. 38). This has not the professional completeness of style seen under Tahutmes III (fig. 37), but it carries on the less precise sentimentalism of Akhenaten (fig. 39), with much feeling for expression and beauty, but a lack of grip and force. The brow is neglected, the eye is feeble, the cheek is without detail, but the lips and chin are enforced as far as possible. The whole effect is sweet but not impressive.

New Kingdom Sculpture

36. Under Amenhotep III 38. Tutankhamen. 36. Under Amenhotep III 38. Tutankhamen.
37. Tahutmes III 39. Akhenaten. 37. Tahutmes III 39. Akhenaten.
New Kingdom Sculpture 39 New Kingdom Sculpture 40 New Kingdom Sculpture 40
Wood carvings of girls (XVIIIth dynasty) Wood-carvings of girls (XVIIIth dynasty).

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"The Arts And Crafts Of Ancient Egypt" cap.IV b

by W. M. Flinders
 The Statuary. Part 4

We now turn to the minor work in wood. In the Old Kingdom, wood was frequently carved on a large scale; of the Middle Kingdom there is the statue of King Hor; but under the New Kingdom the only large figures are some rather coarse funeral statues. On the other hand, in small figures there is a profusion of wood-carving. The wooden us-habtis are often beautifully treated; the draped figures of women are graceful and dignified, with minute working of the hair and dress; the grotesque figures of toilet objects are full of character; but here our space limits us to one class, and we give the nude figures (figs. 40-42), as such are rarely found in other material.
The little negress (fig. 40), carved in ebony, is part of a group representing her carrying a tray, which is supported by a monkey before her. But these accessories are inferior, and merely hide the figure; the edge of the tray has been slightly cut in on the breast and thus disfigured it. The detail of this statuette is better than any other such work; the perfect pose of the attitude, the poise of the head, the fulness of the muscles, the innocent gravity of the expression, are all excellent.
Other figures are carved in the handles of toilet trays. The girl in fig. 41 holding flowers and birds is on a smaller and coarser scale than the preceding, but is excellent in expression and in the modelling of the trunk. The damsel playing a lute on her boat amid the papyrus thicket (fig. 42) shows one of the graceful adjuncts of water-parties in high life. The length of leg is exaggerated to harmonise with the long stems around; but the pose is skilfully seized, the distance of the feet being needful for balance in a little shallop, while the cling of the thighs is maintained. There is more self-consciousness and deliberate effect in this expression than in that of the little girls seen before.
The age of decadence now begins with the Ra-messides. One fine piece arrests us in the black granite statue of Ramessu II (fig. 43), of which an entire view is given in fig. 11. The whole pose is fairly good, the face looking down toward the spectator below. The king is no longer the dignified organiser of the Old Kingdom, with a vision far away beyond everyday matters, but he is obviously considering the opinion of the man in front of him. The detail is almost equal to that of the previous dynasty; the eye is natural, the nose rather formal, the lips with the sharp edge even more developed than before, and the chin and throat less modelled. The elbow is carefully wrought, bringing out the fold of flesh and the muscle separately, the accuracy of which is questionable.
A good example of a private sculpture is the head of Bak-en-khonsu (fig. 44). The eye is only slightly indicated, leaning to the conventional blocking out seen in figs. 91 and 137. The profile is good, and the lips are less exaggerated than in the royal statues. The artist could give all his attention to the face alone, as the figure is entirely hidden in an almost cubic block, which represents the man seated with knees drawn up before the chest.
The head of Merenptah (fig. 45) shows him as inheriting and imitating his father's face and attitude. The style is cold and formal; the eyes are so forward as to be even beyond the plane of the forehead, and scarcely capped by the brow. But the nose and lips are natural and free of the forcing which is seen rather earlier. There is no attempt at any delicacy of facial curves, and the chin and throat are masked by the official beard. As this is in gray granite, and was executed as the ka statue of the king's personal temple, it may be taken as the best that could be done at that time.
43. Ramessu II 45. Merenptah 43. Ramessu II 45. Merenptah.
44. Bak en khonsu 46. Taharqa 44. Bak-en-khonsu 46. Taharqa.
A different feeling comes in with the massive individual portrait of Taharqa (fig. 46). The facial muscles are strongly marked, but the mouth is singularly unformed, and is exactly the opposite of that in the strong type of fig. 34. The eyes are of the gibbous form, with a long slot of lachrymal fossa, which is also shown in the kindred figure of Queen Amenardys (fig. 47). The style is not akin to any other Egyptian work, and it seems as if an entirely different physiognomy had challenged the sculptor and made him drop his usual treatment and study Nature afresh.
The alabaster statue of Amenardys (fig. 47) is disproportioned as a whole, though parts are good separately. It has just the faults due to an imitator who does not trust to observation. The head is too large, the jointing is weak. Each of the features is fairly well rendered; and within the limits of later mannerism there is no forcing or exaggeration.
The portrait of Mentu-em-hat (fig. 48) belongs to the same style as that of Taharqa, and both are in black granite. The eyes seem too small, but this is rather due to the depth and massiveness of the jaws, which overweight the face. The apparent disproportion in the low forehead is only due to the photograph being taken too close and low down. The height above the eyes is really equal to that down to the upper edge of the chin. The facial curves are carefully observed, and we can well credit this with being a true portrait of the capable governor of Thebes who continued in office under Taharqa and Tanut-amen, and who repaired the devastations of the Assyrian invasion.
A head broken from a statue, found at Memphis (fig. 49), is remarkable for the deep and searching modelling. The bony structure, the facial muscles, and the surface folds are all scrupulously observed. The artist's triumph is shown in the harmony and the living character which he has infused into his laborious precision. Very rarely can a man rise superior to such a rigorous training. The character of work is scarcely Egyptian; it belongs rather to the same school as the republican Roman portraits, but is earlier than those, as it has more precision of detail.

Late Sculpture

47. Amenardys 49. Basalt head 47. Amenardys 49. Basalt head.
48. Mentu em hat 50. Wooden head 48. Mentu-em-hat 50. Wooden head.
Lastly, we have one of the best examples of Greek influence in Egypt shown by the wood-carving of a coffin (fig. 50). The long narrow face shaded by thick wavy hair is Greek in feeling, while the feather head-dress is old Egyptian. Unfortunately, the decay of the wood has broken the surface, but it still remains an impressive example of Egyptian influence on art which is mainly Greek.

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"The Arts And Crafts Of Ancient Egypt" cap.IV

by W. M. Flinders

Chapter IV. The Reliefs

In reliefs the representation of Nature is complicated by the inevitable use of some conventions, and some kind of perspective, to reduce solid objects to a plane delineation. It follows that for the study of naturalistic art they are inferior to statuary, though they give rise to a whole system of artistic conventions which are of interest in themselves. It appears that among most races drawings precede reliefs, and hence relief must be looked on as developed drawing, and not as trammelled statuary. The oldest reliefs are those of the prehistoric ivory carvings (see fig. 3), in which we see maintained the pictorial convention of crossing lines to substantiate the outline of a solid body, although the body was now expressed by the relief. A large quantity of ivory reliefs showing rows of animals were found at Hierakonpolis, belonging to the earliest historic times. Of the same class are the reliefs upon the primitive figures from Koptos (fig. 51). These comprise the elephant, stag's head, and swordfish, as well as the hyaena and ox. The design is spirited, and seizes the characteristics of the animals; while hills are conventionally shown by lumps under each foot. The method of work is by bruising out the surface with a pointed stone pick around the outline, and so lowering the surrounding ground (here shaded), while the body of the animal remains of the original face of the stone.

Earliest Reliefs

51. Hyaena and bull 53. Group of animals 51. Hyaena and bull 53. Group of animals.
52. Gazelles and palm 54. King Narmer 52. Gazelles and palm 54. King Narmer.
The next stage is that of the astonishing slate reliefs. The purely artistic motive is seen in the group of two long-necked gazelles with a palm-tree (fig. 52). The detail of the forms of the joints and the general pose of the animals is excellent, and the feeling for the graceful, slender outline and smooth surfaces is enforced by the rugged palm stem placed between the gazelles. The love of the strange and wild elements is seen in the rout of animals, real and mythical, in fig. 53, which shows the lion, giraffe, wild ox, and many kinds of deer, well known to the early artists.
The figure of King Narmer (fig. 54) is the historical point in these slate carvings. As it is more advanced in style than any of the others, it shows that they all belong to the age just before the 1st dynasty, about 5500 B.C. Here the pose and jointing are excellent, and the muscles are proclaimed by the artist as the results of his observation. The later Egyptian canon is observed that a straight line should pass through the middle of the head, middle of the trunk, point of the backward knee, and middle between the heels: only, as the king is here leaning forward in action, the line is not vertical as it is in later standing figures. The facial characters of the king and his foe are well distinguished; altogether five different types of race are shown on these early carvings. The surface of the slate has been worked down with a metal scraper, shown by the parallel grooves in the face.
On reaching the beginning of the pyramid age the finest work is seen in the three wooden panels of Ra-hesy (fig. 55, frontispiece). The anatomy is full, though not so excessive as in the earlier work. The facial curves are carefully rendered, and the mouth is excellently formed. The eye is of course placed in front view, as it always was by Egyptians. The whole figure has an air of stark vigour, which is fitting to a high official who managed a dozen different offices.
The multitude of the mastaba tomb-chapels of the pyramid age contain so many thousands of scenes, illustrating every act of life of men and animals, that it is impossible to give any view of their variety. Here we can only give two scenes illustrating composition. In fig. 56 is a group of men dragging down an ox for sacrifice. The arrangement of the lines is clear, each figure stands out separately, the action is vigorous and simple. Another scene of an ox-herd (fig. 57) shows quiet motion, with the unusual turning of the head. This might be thought unnatural, but exactly the same twist of the body may be seen among Egyptians now. This style of relief deteriorated in the VIth dynasty, and then continuously decayed until the middle of the Xlth dynasty, by which time it has reached a most degraded state.
Suddenly, in the middle of the Xlth dynasty, a new style of careful elaboration begins to appear, a true archaic germ of a new school. This rapidly grew, until at the later part of that dynasty there is a stiff and over-elaborate style, which is well shown in the figure of the princess Kauat having her hair curled (fig. 58). The eyes of all the figures are gibbous, with a moderate fossa; the lips have usually a sharp edge, though sometimes merely rounded; and there is the beginning of facial modelling. the pyramid age contain so many thousands of scenes, illustrating every act of life of men and animals, that it is impossible to give any view of their variety. Here we can only give two scenes illustrating composition. In fig. 56 is a group of men dragging down an ox for sacrifice. The arrangement of the lines is clear, each figure stands out separately, the action is vigorous and simple. Another scene of an ox-herd (fig. 57) shows quiet motion, with the unusual turning of the head. This might be thought unnatural, but exactly the same twist of the body may be seen among Egyptians now. This style of relief deteriorated in the VIth dynasty, and then continuously decayed until the middle of the Xlth dynasty, by which time it has reached a most degraded state.
Suddenly, in the middle of the Xlth dynasty, a new style of careful elaboration begins to appear, a true archaic germ of a new school. This rapidly grew, until at the later part of that dynasty there is a stiff and over-elaborate style, which is well shown in the figure of the princess Kauat having her hair curled (fig. 58). The eyes of all the figures are gibbous, with a moderate fossa; the lips have usually a sharp edge, though sometimes merely rounded; and there is the beginning of facial modelling.

Old Kingdom Reliefs

56. The sacrifice 57. The ox herd 56. The sacrifice.
57. The ox-herd.
In the XIIth dynasty the surface modelling became elaborate, most delicate gradations being wrought with faint outlines, as seen in the Mem-phite head, fig. 6. A bold high relief and simpler treatment was followed by the Theban school, as in fig. 59 of the god Ptah and Senusert I embracing. The use of sunk relief, as fig. 58, was as early as the IVth dynasty, though most of the tomb sculptures are in high relief. Sunk relief became commoner in the MiddleKingdom, and almost universal in the New Kingdom. It saved a large amount of labour, and it protected the sculptures from injury; but it is so forcible a convention that it is never so pleasing as the raised work.
The XVIIIth dynasty opens with another revival of art, but yet it never reached the levels of the earlier ages. The profusion of reliefs of Thebes and other great sites has made the style of the XVIIIth and XIXth dynasties the most familiar to us, but its inferiority to that of the previous periods is more obvious the more it is studied. The sculptures of Hatshepsut at Deir el Bahri are celebrated, yet the detail in fig. 60 is not rich. There is scarcely any modelling of face or muscles, mere flat surfaces sufficing; there is but little expression in the features; and the whole effect is flat and tame. More character appears under Amenhotep III (fig. 61), though even here there is none of the muscular detail which was constantly shown in early work. The features smile gracefully without any real expression, and the trivial details of dress are worked out to give a picturesque elaboration. The taste for mere prettiness and graceful personalities ruled more and more as the XVIIIth dynasty developed.

Middle Kingdom Reliefs

58. Toilet of princess 59. Senusert I and Ptah 58. Toilet of princess.
59. Senusert I and Ptah.
60. Hatshepsut 61. Servant of Kha em hat 62. Akhenaten and queen 60. Hatshepsut 61. Servant of Kha-em-hat.
62. Akhenaten and queen.
At last this taste, stimulated by the influence of the Greek art and its love of expressing motion, broke all bounds in the movement under Akhenaten. The example in fig. 62 gives the essence of Atenism. The natural but ungainly attitudes, the flourishing ribands, the heavy collars and kilt, the ungraceful realism of the figures, the loss of all expression and detail of structure, - all these show the death of a permanentartinthe fever of novelty and vociferation.
This ferment being passed, the Egyptian went back on his older style; but it had lost its life, it could only be copied. The exquisite smoothness and finish of the good work of Sety I at Abydos is entirely lifeless and destitute of observation. It has no anatomical detail, but was made by well-constructed human machines who could not express an emotion which they did not feel.
The historical scenes of the great sculptures of Karnak are full of interest, but almost destitute of art. Some parts of the work of Ramessu III at Medinet Habu show more observation, such as the hunting scene, fig. 63. The wild bulls are well studied, and the marsh-plants with feathery tops show a real appreciation of natural growth and beauty.
Under the XXVIth dynasty came the deliberate imitation of the work of the Old Kingdom. In a few cases this is passably done, and even some invention may be seen. But in general there is only a lifeless imitation of various parts clumsily put together. One of the best pieces of such art is the procession of youths and maids carrying animals and farm produce (fig. 64). The forms are true, there is none of the later exaggeration (as in fig. 10), and there is a loving touch in the details, especially of the animals, which belongs to the true artist. Observe how the girls carry the flowers and the birds, while the boys take the heavy loads of papyrus stems and a calf and a basket of flour. Such work is the last flicker of Egyptian art in reliefs, and nothing later claims our notice.

Late Reliefs

63. Bulls in marshes 64. Bearers of offerings 63. Bulls in marshes.
64. Bearers of offerings.

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