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Fragment of a Queen's Face

Period:
New Kingdom, Amarna Period
Dynasty:
Dynasty 18
Reign:
reign of Akhenaten
Date:
ca. 1353–1336 B.C.
Geography:
From Egypt, Middle Egypt, probably el-Amarna (Akhetaten)
Medium:
Yellow jasper
Dimensions:
h. 13 cm (5 1/8 in); w. 12.5 cm (4 15/16 in); d. 12.5 cm (4 15/16 in)
Credit Line:
Purchase, Edward S. Harkness Gift, 1926
Accession Number:
26.7.1396
  • Description

    This striking fragment is from a statue composed of different materials. The back of the piece shows remains of the mortise that fitted onto a tenon extending from the statue's body which may have been made of Egyptian alabaster to represent a white garment. Two headdresses might have fit this head: the khat-headdress, or the Nubian wig (as seen on the canopic jar lid, 30.8.54, in the same gallery).
    The royal woman represented here cannot be identified with certainty. It is difficult to imagine that the already aged Queen Tiye—the mother of Akhenaten and highly respected as a wise woman at Amarna—was shown as a beauty of such sensuous character. Queens Nefertiti and Kiya, however, are both possible subjects.

  • Provenance

    Formerly Carnarvon Collection (purchased in Cairo from Maurice Nahman before 1923). Purchased by the Metropolitan Museum of Art from Almina, Countess of Carnarvon, 1926.

  • See also
    What
    Where
    When
    In the Museum
    Heilbrunn Timeline of Art History
    MetPublications
544514

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