Art/ Collection/ Art Object

Belt

Period:
Predynastic, Badarian
Date:
ca. 4000–3800 B.C.
Geography:
From Egypt, Northern Upper Egypt, Matmar, Tomb 3094, BSAE/Brunton excavations, 1931
Medium:
Glazed steatite, shell
Dimensions:
L. 278 cm (109 7/16 in)
Credit Line:
Rogers Fund, 1932
Accession Number:
32.2.26
On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 101
This beaded belt was found wound around the waist of a man. It is one of only six Badarian belts known. All were worn by men, suggesting that belts were a male preogative. Several colossal statues of the fertility god Min demonstrate how such a belt was worn, but interestingly, no belts are currently known from the period between the Badarian and the end of the Predynastic Period, the date of the Min statues. Perhaps beads were replaced by linen or leather, which have not survived.
Excavated by Guy Brunton of the British Museum Expedition to Middle Egypt at Matmar, 1931. Allotted to the excavator by the Egyptian Government in the division of finds. Acquired by the Museum from Brunton, 1932.

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