domingo, 29 de noviembre de 2015

Two princesses

Two princesses with Sistra, fragment from a tomb relief; limestone; Theben West; New Kingdom, 18th dynasty; c. 1365 BC. Egyptian Museum, Berlin, Inv. no. 18526

Musical instrument,

Musical instrument, possibly a lyre. Country of Origin: Ancient Egypt Period/ Date: Amarna period 18th dynasty c.1352-1336 BC. Credit Line: Werner Forman Archive/ Egyptian Museum, Berlin

23 de febrero 2002 Djehuty

< Diario 2002

23 de febrero

Trabajo de campo

La más bella

Hoy hemos sacado a la luz la pieza más bella de esta primera campaña de excavación. En el sector Norte, junto con unas maderas descolocadas, surgió de la arena un cara preciosa también de madera, pintada en un color muy oscuro, casi negro, con las líneas de los ojos y de las cejas en color amarillento o dorado. Al principio sólo se le veía el perfil, y todos temíamos que sólo tendríamos la mitad del rostro. Pero cuando salió entero, perfectamente conservado, nos quedamos sobrecogidos con la suavidad de sus facciones y su ingenua sonrisa. Es, sin duda, una pieza magnífica. Por los colores con los que fue pintado, todo parece indicar que se trata de la cara del mismo sarcófago del que hace unos cuantos días encontramos los pies de la tapa.
Alicia limpió la pieza con esmero y le aplicó la primera capa de Paraloid. A continuación, Ana la fotografiaba desde todos los ángulos antes de ser envuelta y guardada para su mejor conservación.
En el mismo sector, poco después, Margarita sacaba un fragmento de otro sarcófago policromado, con una columna de texto en jeroglífico en la parte central.
Tanto en el Norte como en el Sur encontramos una decena de fragmentos de piedra con restos de inscripción, con los signos conservando parcialmente su coloración en azul o en rojo.


Cosmetic container in the form of a large-eyed grasshopper. The wings can be removed to expose the cavity which was used for storing eye make-up. Grasshoppers were a menace to Ancient Egyptians destroying the crops and causing famine, reflected in the biblical account of the eighth plague (Exodus). Country of Origin: Egypt Culture: Ancient Egyptian Date/Period: Amarna, 18th Dynasty 1352 - 1336 BC. Material Size: Painted wood and ivory L=3.5'. Credit Line: Werner Forman Archive/ Private Collection


Incised block (talatat). Sunk relief depicting an offering scene. Country of Origin: Egypt. Culture: Ancient Egyptian. Date/Period: Tell el Amarna c.1340-1335BC. Credit Line: Werner Forman Archive/ McAlpine Collection


Inventory number B.471
Archaeological Site UNKNOWN
Category AMULET
Material FAIENCE
Height 2 cm
Bibliography•B. VAN DE WALLE, Antiquités égyptiennes, Bruxelles, 1952 (Les antiquités égyptiennes, grecques, étrusques, romaines, gallo-romaines du Musée de Mariemont), n° E. 113, p. 46, pl. 13; M.-C. BRUWIER, «La collection égyptienne de Raoul Warocqué, II. De 1912 à 1917», in Cahiers de Mariemont, 20-21, 1989-1990, p. 51; Cl. Derriks, Choix d'œuvres, I, Égypte, Morlanwelz, 1990, n° 25; Cl. DERRIKS et L. DELVAUX, Antiquités égyptiennes au Musée royal de Mariemont, Morlanwelz, 2009, p. 245.

Sarcophagus of Queen Kawit

Sarcophagus of Queen Kawit
The sarcophagus of Queen Kawit, who was the wife of King Montuhotep the Second, was one of the most noteworthy in terms of the low-relief sculpture in the Theban court.
The outer faces of this limestone sarcophagus are decorated with scenes from daily life, such as the queen applying makeup. Other scenes depict offerings and the afterlife.
At the place of Queen Kawit's head, there is a palace facade with the central doors decorated with Udjat eyes to permit the deceased to communicate with the world of living.
The elongated bodies and the coarse facial features reflect the Theban ideal of feminine beauty.
Present location EGYPTIAN MUSEUM [01/001] CAIRO EM
Inventory number JE 47397
Archaeological Site DEIR EL-BAHARI
Technique CARVED
Height 119 cm
Width 119 cm

ataud de Teti

The Second Intermediate Period model coffin of Teti in
the British Museum (EA 35016)
Wolfram Grajetzki
The British Museum possesses in the collection of the Department of Ancient Egypt and Sudan a
model coffin purchased in 1868 as part of the Robert J. Hay collection.
Although much of the Hay
Collection comes from Thebes, the provenance of this piece is not known. It is made of two pieces of
wood, one for the box, the other one for the lid.
The outside is plastered and then painted. The measurements
are: length: 29.5 cm, width: 10.8 cm (10.0 cm at the head end), height: 15.4 cm (including
lid). The walls are 2.5 cm thick at the short ends and about 1.0–1.4 cm thick at the long sides. At the
short ends there are holes for keeping the lid on the box (Fig. 12). The box is made of one piece of
wood which was hollowed out to a depth of about 6.0 cm. The box has on the underside two floor
battens (2.5 cm wide) also carved out of the wood. The lid is vaulted with rectangular raised ends (each
about 3.5 cm wide). These raised ends are diagonally cut on the back side only of the lid, perhaps
because of the shape of the wood used (see Fig. 10). The coffin is in general well preserved, though the
plaster has flaked away at some points. The inscriptions on the foot end are no longer visible (Fig. 8,
Fig. 9).
The decoration is painted in black on the white plaster. The decorative pattern follows closely ‘real’
coffins of the Second Intermediate Period. At the top of the four outer sides there is a horizontal line
of hieroglyphs and there are vertical text columns all around. At the front side there are eight of these,
at the back nine and on each short end two columns. All animal hieroglyphs are mutilated on this
model coffin, as is common for the Second Intermediate Period on objects placed in a burial chamber.
The edges on the sides are framed with a black line. This black framing line appears also on the lid (see
Fig. 5). On the front side there is a panel bearing two
eyes and a
-ring between them. On
the head end is painted the figure of a standing woman.
The texts on the coffin are quite garbled, and no spell seems to be complete. However, in several
cases it is possible to identify these broken spells from other sources. The horizontal text lines contain
mainly spells also known from two royal pyramidia of the late Middle Kingdom.
The columns have
speeches of different gods, introduced by
∂d mdw
(‘Words spoken by’). The texts are as follows:
I would like to thank John Taylor for providing me with access to this coffin and encouraging me to publish it
here. All photographic pictures and drawings are my own. A photo and short description will be found in Taylor
and Strudwick,
Mummies: Death and the Afterlife,
Other model coffins of the Middle Kingdom are made from several pieces and constructed almost like a real coffin:
compare Arnold,
The Pyramid of Senwosret I, The South Cemeteries at Lisht I
, 147–49, and also ibid., 34–39,
pls 13–14.
Chests of Life


Princess Kaiwit having her hair dressed, a cup-bearer stands before her. Thebes, XII Dynasty. In the Cairo museum

Sarcophagus of Kauit

Sarcophagus of Kauit from the Mortuary Temple of Mentuhotep II. at Deir el-Bahari
Henry Edouard Naville, The XIth Dynasty Temple at Deir el-Bahari, Bd. 1, London, 1907, Pl. XIX-B

jueves, 19 de noviembre de 2015

Funerary Mask of a Lady

Funerary Mask of a Lady
The funerary mask represents a mixture of both the Egyptian and the Roman cultures. The Roman lady, who seems to have lived in the first century AD, is portrayed as a mummy.
The funeral mask takes the shape of Osirian coffins with a Roman front and depicts a part of both her arms and the chest.
The lady has placed her hands on her chest, holding ears of wheat in the left hand and a pinecone on the right, both of which are symbols of Dionysos. The lady was eager to adorn herself.
She is shown wearing a necklace, two bracelets on both wrists, and two unique rings with two different stones on each hand. All of her jewelry is gold plated and her nails are colored. Her chest is painted pink.
The face looks very beautiful with her large eyes, inlaid and furnished with a line of eyelashes, staring into endless space. The mouth is shown partly open with her thin lips colored light red.

The Roman baths at Alexandria

The Roman baths at Alexandria. Built on three levels: the highest was the cold bath, the middle the warm bath, the base the steam bath. View of excavations revealing the underground columns of the hypocaust. Country of Origin: Egypt. Culture: Graeco-Roman. Date/Period: Roman Period. Place of Origin: Alexandria. Material Size: Brick.


Friso oeste XLVII, 132-136, Museo Británico.

Caballería del friso del Partenón, oeste II, 2-3. Museo Británico

Caballería del friso del Partenón, oeste II, 2-3. Museo Británico


Girls walking in single line; the first one on the left carries a thymiaterion (incense burner), the others oinochoai (jugs) or phiales (bowls) for libations. Block VIII (fig. 57-61) from the East frieze of the Parthenon, ca. 447–433 BC.

Riders and galloping horses from the north frieze of the Parthenon

Riders and galloping horses from the north frieze of the Parthenon. The central figure raises his whip hand and ex Country of Origin: Greece. Culture: Ancient Greek. Date/Period: c. 440 BC. Place of Origin: Athens. Material Size: marble. Archive/ British Museum, London.

A vignette from the Book of the Dead of Neferrenpet

A vignette from the Book of the Dead of Neferrenpet. The dead man with Anubis and other gods of the Underworld. Country of Origin: Egypt. Culture: Ancient Egyptian. Date/Period: 19th dynasty/1295-1186BC. Place of Origin: Thebes. Material Size: Painting on papyrus. Musees Royaux d' Art et d' Historie, Brussels E.5043. Location: 133

Winged Isis pectoral

Winged Isis pectoral
Napatan Period, reign of Amaninatakelebte
538–519 B.C.
Chased gold pectoral representing the winged goddess Isis, shown kneeling with wings outstretched. In her right hand, she holds an ankh, the symbol for “life”; in her left hand she holds what may be the hieroglyph for a sail, the symbol for the breath of life. On her head is a throne, the hierogyph for her name.
From Nuri, pyramid 10 (tomb of Amaninatakelebte). 1916: excavated by the Harvard University-Boston Museum of Fine Arts Expedition; assigned to the MFA by the division of finds with the government of Sudan. (Accession date: March 1, 1920
Harvard University—Boston Museum of Fine Arts Expedition

Perfume bottle in the form of a trussed duck or goose

Perfume bottle in the form of a trussed duck or goose

Late Period, Dynasty 26
664–525 B.C.
The body of this slender vessel takes the shape of a plucked duck or goose bound with string and ready for cooking - a familiar theme in Egyptian art. During the Old Kingdom, some tombs were provided with life-size cases shaped like such birds with real food offerings inside, while other tombs contained miniature versions in solid stone. In the Middle Kingdom, perfume and ointment containers in the form of trussed ducks were carved in the beautiful blue stone anhydrite, and that tradition continued into the New Kingdom. This Late Period example, however, may owe as much to contemporary Aegean figural vases as it does to its Egyptian precedents. Like some Corinthian oil bottles, it rests horizontally on its belly (it will not stand unsupported), and has a handle in the form of an animal’s neck that curves back from the rim of the vessel so that the head rests on the body. The Egyptians loved such figurative vessels that were functional at the same time. The small size and narrow opening of this bottle would have been perfect for precious ointments or perfumes that were used only in small doses and needed to be protected from evaporation. The material from which the bottle is made, faience, is difficult to work. A nonclay ceramic manufactured from crushed sand and salt, and a colorant, it has none of the malleability of clay. The small size, fancy shape, subtle hues, and remarkably thin handle of this faience vessel make it a masterpiece in miniature.


Head on one side; standing figure on the other.

Head on one side; standing figure on the other.
From el-Shaghamba near Bilbeis. 1905-6, excavated by W. M. F. Petrie for the Egyptian Research Account; assigned to the Egyptian Research Account by the government of Egypt; presented to the MFA by the Egyptian Research Account.
New Kingdom, Dynasty 19...
1295–1186 B.C.
Legacy dimension: .09 x .053

miércoles, 18 de noviembre de 2015

Figure of Thoth-Iah (Moon God)

Figure of Thoth-Iah (Moon God)
As early as the Old Kingdom, the ibis-headed Thoth appeared in the Pyramid Texts (ca. 2330 BC) as god of the moon along with Iah and Khonsu. The god of wisdom, writing, and administration, Thoth embodied the moon's dynamic nature; his knowledge extended to the science of numbers, medicine, and all magical secrets. This figure combines iconographical elements which refer to several deities. The human-shaped body with long wig and uraeus above the... forehead, together with a moon-disk and crescent, represents the moon god Iah. The ibis head refers to Thoth, the Atef-crown with the feathers stands for the god of the netherworld, Osiris, and the ram horns represent Amun. Because the disk can be interpreted as moon or sun-disk, it is likely that in combination with the ram horns the solar aspect of Amun, or Amun-Re, is intended. All of these different elements express the idea of the renewal of moon and sun, and therefore also of the donor of such a figure in his afterlife.

Deir el-Medina, Tomb TT1, SENNEDJEM , son of Khabekhnet and Tahennu

Deir el-Medina, Tomb TT1, SENNEDJEM , son of Khabekhnet and Tahennu

The upper register of the west side of the south wall
Deir el-Medina, Tomb TT1, SENNEDJEM , son of Khabekhnet and Tahennu
Above the banquet is a scene of funeral vigil of the mummy, which occupies the whole upper register on this side of the entry. This is a another vignette concluding §17 of the Book of the Dead, which began in the entrance. It probably also makes reference to a ceremony which would have been held in the courtyard of the chapel before the burial.
A light construction, in wood and canvas, protects the mummy of Sennedjem. The beautiful red material, heightened of pendants, appropriate to the Osirian context, is often found.
A lion-styled bed (head, tail and paws) expresses the arrival at the end of the journey, at the horizon of the western sky. The beautiful anthropoid coffin, the main body of which is enclosed prophylactic bands on which text would have been written, lays with the head towards the west, the domain of the deceased. It is protected by two milans (and not falcons as one sometimes reads) representing the two goddess sisters, Isis and Nephthys. They wear on top of their heads the hieroglyph of their name.
Isis is at the feet and behind her is the text, a reminder of her functions; she is "the great divine mother, mistress of the sky, wife of all gods".
Nephthys, "powerful in speech, mistress of the sky, mistress of the two lands", who has the power to transfuse the vital fluid, is at the head, and proclaims : "I come to protect the Osiris, the servant in the Place of Truth, Sennedjem".
Why were these birds of prey chosen as icons for the goddesses ? Could it be because their shrill cry is a reminder of eastern laments, a cutting sharp scream, which usually accompany funeral vigils ?
In accordance with the well known Osirian myth, the sisters watch over the deceased, the new Osiris, as they watched over their brother (husband of one, lover of the other) the dead Osiris.
So the assimilation of Sennedjem with the Great God appears complete. Notice the spatial disposition : this scene is inseparable from that of the mummy's revivification by Anubis, which faces it on the north wall, because the god and the two goddesses act jointly to bring the Osiris back to life.

Necklace and shabti

Necklace and shabti
String of blue to green glazed faience tubular beads, with a plain white painted clay shabti. Both beads and figure are typical of rich burials in the first millennium BC, when the mummified body received a net cover of beads arranged in diamond pattern.
Margaret Murray, National Museum of Science and Art, General Guide III. Egyptian Antiquities, Dublin 1910.

two necklace plaquettes,

The two necklace plaquettes, of which the provenance is not known, show an openwork decoration figuring spirals. The motif is originally from the island of Crete, but the production is surely egyptian. The pieces, which are provided with a suspension ring, date from the New Kingdom.

Crocodile in cornaline

 Crocodile in cornaline




This beautiful amulet represents a crocodile. The sacred animal of the god Sobek protected its owners against the dangers of life in the Afterlife.

Camino Blanco

This amulet in the form of a stela

This amulet in the form of a stela, which was acquired in the art trade, represents three pairs of ears which are found on both sides of the name of the woman Nefertari. The ears show that the dedicant, whose name is not specified, hopes that the divinity, probably Ahmes-Nefertari, queen at the beginning of the 18th Dynasty, will pay attention to her prayers.


In the enclosures of late temples, archaeologists have found many erotic figurines which were given as offerings to different divinities. As such is also counted a whole category of amulets of the same genre, like this example of blue faience, which comes from the collection of É. de Meester de Ravestein. It represents a kneeling man holding his enormous phallus. On the back, one notices a hole for suspension which has not been entirely pierced.
oman period

small amulet

This small amulet of molten glass takes the form of a heart. According to the Egyptians, the heart was the centre of physical life, of emotional life, of will and of intelligence. It played an important role in religion and in funerary rites, for example in "the weighing of the heart", at the moment where the judges of the Afterlife had to decide if the deceased deserved the immortality of the blessed.
"Ib" heart
New Kingdom


Amulet: "Two fingers" in obsidian
This obsidian amulet is a part of the Opening of the Mouth ritual which was performed in front of the tomb of the deceased. The ritual involved magically opening the senses by touching them with various instruments and with two fingers. The amulets were often placed on the chest or belly of the mummy to protect the deceased and to assure him of eternal mouth openings

martes, 17 de noviembre de 2015

Segment from a dark dyed

Segment from a dark dyed background linen textile decorated with a red scroll border and thick band, above a green background register with a polychrome motif of facing birds and flowers. This is from a group of Coptic textiles acquired at the Faiyum, forming an instructive group for regional comparison beside the fine set from Akhmim in Upper Egypt, acquired in 1888.

Máscara de momia

Máscara de momia
época romana
Máscara de momia enlucido con las mejillas y la boca magníficamente modeladas, y elaborados detalles como las pestañas y las ventanas de la nariz. La máscara está rota en el pelo negro del frontal y la guirnalda verde, con un soporte de basta tela de lino en la espalda. El estilo es típico de los cementerios provinciales de Egipto durante los primeros momentos del gobierno romano.

lunes, 16 de noviembre de 2015

Fragment of relief with offering-bearer

Fragment of relief with offering-bearer
Temple wall fragment carved in relief with an offering-bearer leading a gazelle. This is one of numerous relief fragments from a series of offering-bearers or courtiers, retrieved by the Egypt Exploration Fund in the clearance of the temple of king Nebhepetra Mentuhotep on the West Bank at Thebes. The artist has indicated the musculature of the legs and has included the details on the body of the animal.
Inventory number 1907:474
Archaeological Site DEIR EL-BAHARI
Category RELIEF
Height 19 cm
Width 38 cm
Depth 12.5 cm

Amenhotep III

Amenhotep III (also known as Amenophis III) was the son of Thutmosis IV and the father of Akhenaten (Amenhotep IV). He became pharaoh at around the age of 12 and reigned during the latter part of the 18th Dynasty. The Great Royal wife of Amenhotep III was Tiy, mother of Akhenaten. She was the daughter of Yuya and Tuya. He also married his daughter Sitamon, and it is believed that he had in excess of 300 wives. Amenhotep-Heqawaset was his birth name, meaning "Amun is pleased, Ruler of Thebes". His throne name was Neb-maat-re, meaning "Lord of Truth is Re". (