Art/ Collection/ Art Object

Canopic jar of Perneb

Period:
Old Kingdom
Dynasty:
Dynasty 5
Reign:
reign of Isesi–Unis
Date:
ca. 2381–2323 B.C.
Geography:
From Egypt, Memphite Region, Saqqara, Tomb of Perneb, MMA excavations, 1913–14
Medium:
Limestone
Dimensions:
H: 23.5 cm (9 1/4 in.); diam: 14.5 cm (5 11/16 in.)
Credit Line:
Gift of Edward S. Harkness, 1914
Accession Number:
14.7.16a, b
On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 100
A variety of objects were found during the clearing of Perneb's tomb including four canopic jars - containers used to store the four internal organs removed from the body during mummification. Perneb's canopic jars have simple convex lids and there is no inscription on the jars to indicate which internal organ would have been placed inside - this is typical of jars from the Old Kingdom. Starting in the Middle Kingdom, canopic jars often have lids in the form of a human head, and they are often inscribed with the name of one of the Four Sons of Horus, the deities who protected the internal organs. Beginning in the early New Kingdom, the jars often have four different lids which identify the individual deities (see 12.183.1).
From Saqqara, purchased from the Egyptian government, 1914.

Lythgoe, Albert M. and Caroline Ransom 1916. The Tomb of Perneb. New York: Metropolitan Museum of Art, p. 22.

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