Relief of a Funerary Ceremony

11008429-2007_009_001_Epa_ARC.tif

Title

Relief of a Funerary Ceremony

Keywords

Relief

Date

2305-2152 BC

Context

Old Kingdom, Dynasty 6
Egypt
Egyptian

Medium/Dimensions

Limestone, pigment
Maximum: 9 1/2 x 18 x 1 3/8 in. (24.1 x 45.7 x 3.5 cm)

Object Number

2007.009.001

Description

The elaborate preparations the ancient Egyptians made for the afterlife prompted one scholar to call them a "mausoleum culture". The massive pyramids of the Old Kingdom were designed to serve as monuments for the reigning king. They were built on the edge of the desert opposite the capital at Memphis and were often surrounded by the tombs of the members of the king's court and family.

These types of burials were known as mastaba tombs, after the Arabic word for a mud bench, which they resembled. The tombs would be decorated with beautifully carved reliefs usually depicting offerings and rituals for the deceased. The scene here represents part of the burial ceremony. The three figures on the relief would have been facing an image of the tomb owner. The middle figure is identified by the hieroglyphic caption as the temple scribe, who is shown raising the lid on an incense burner. Behind him is the larger figure of the officiating priest, who is reading the funerary ritual from an unrolled papyrus scroll. He is identified as "the Sole Companion, the Lector Priest, Tety". The rest of the name is lost, but it was a compound with that of the name of the first king of the Sixth Dynasty, Tety. That, along with the style of the relief, helps us date this piece to the last great flowering of Egyptian art at the close of the Old Kingdom.

Credit Line

Gift of the Forward Arts Foundation

Exhibits/Publications

MCCM Permanent Collection Reinstallation, 2008 - August 10, 2011|
Life and Death in the Pyramid Age: The Emory Old Kingdom Mummy, Michael C. Carlos Museum, September 10 - December 11, 2011|
MCCM Permanent Collection Reinstallation, February 2012 - Present
Michael C. Carlos Museum: Highlights of the Collections (Atlanta: Michael C. Carlos Museum, 2011), 15.|
Peter Lacovara, "Life and Death in the Pyramid Age," Minerva 22 (September/October 2011): 12-13.

Rights

© Michael C. Carlos Museum, Emory University. Photo by Bruce M. White, 2008.
This image is provided by the Michael C. Carlos Museum of Emory University, who retains all rights in it. This image is made available for limited non-commercial, educational, and personal use only, or for fair use as defined by United States law. For all other uses, please contact the Michael C. Carlos Museum Office of Collections Services at +1(404) 727-4282 or mccm.collections.services@emory.edu. Users must cite the author and source of the image as they would material from any printed work, but not in any way that implies endorsement of the user or the user's use of the image. Users may not remove any copyright, trademark, or other proprietary notices, including without limitation attribution information, credits, and copyright notices that have been placed on or near the image by the Museum. The Museum assumes no responsibility for royalties or fees claimed by the artist or third parties. The User agrees to indemnify and hold harmless Emory University, its Michael C. Carlos Museum, its agents, employees, faculty members, students and trustees from and against any and all claims, losses, actions, damages, expenses, and all other liabilities, including but not limited to attorney’s fees, directly or indirectly arising out of or resulting from its use of photographic images for which permission is granted hereunder.

On View

Yes

Citation

“Relief of a Funerary Ceremony,” Michael C. Carlos Museum Collections Online, accessed September 20, 2018, http://carlos.digitalscholarship.emory.edu/items/show/7671.

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