Relief of Clapping Women
Period:Middle KingdomDynasty:Dynasty 11Reign:Mentuhotep IIDate:ca. 2051-2000 B.C.Geography:From Egypt, Deir el-Bahri, Tomb of NeferuMedium:Limestone, paintDimensions:H. 31.7 cm (12 1/2 in.); W. 27.9 cm (11 in.); D. 1.2 (1/2 in.)Credit Line:Cincinnati Art Museum, Gift of Joan L. Stark in memory of Louise J. Roth, 1998.54
This relief fragment depicts a row of clapping women with arms and hands upraised. It probably belonged to a larger scene of a ritual featuring singing or dancing in honor of the goddess Hathor, who was closely connected to these performances. Unusual are the strands of round beads in the women’s hair, which have no exact parallels. Perhaps they were connected with Hathoric rites of the time.