Shabtis are already found in funerary equipment of the Middle Kingdom. From the New Kingdom, they theoretically numbered 365 workers and 37 overseers, one for each team of 10 workers. It is thought that they were expected to undertake forced labour in the next world on behalf of the deceased, and thus they were often provided with small model tools. This superb shabti in blue faience was one of the large collection of funerary figurines made for Sethos I. The wig, eyebrows, collar, as well as the agricultural instruments which the shabti holds in its hands, are painted in black. The text is taken from chapter 6 of the Book of the Dead.
VALLEY OF THE KINGS
NEW KINGDOM: 19TH DYNASTY: SETHOS I/MENMAATRE
W. Seipel, Ägypten. Götter, Gräber und die Kunst. 4000 Jahre Jenseitsglaube (Exposition), Linz 1989, I 210 n° 168
Le Roman de la momie. Les amours d'une princesse égyptienne (Exposition Saint-Gérard de Brogne), Namur 1997, 139 n° 168
KMKG - MRAH
Inventory number E.8386