Art/ Collection/ Art Object

Surveyor's Stake from a Foundation Deposit for Hatshepsut's Temple

New Kingdom
Dynasty 18
Joint reign of Hatshepsut and Thutmose III
ca. 1479–1458 B.C.
From Egypt, Upper Egypt, Thebes, Deir el-Bahri, Temple of Hatshepsut, Foundation Deposit 2b (B), MMA excavations, 1921–22
L. 41.3 cm (16 1/4 in.); Diam. 10.5 cm (4 1/8 in.)
Credit Line:
Rogers Fund and Edward S. Harkness Gift, 1922
Accession Number:
On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 116
The Egyptian foundation ceremony was called "the stretching of the cord." This refers to the ritual of dedicating a temple, but it also describes the action of laying out the temple's ground plan by driving stakes into the earth and stretching a piece of cord between them. The stake (22.3.246) and a mallet (22.3.245) in this photograph are from one of the foundation deposit delineating the perimeter of Hatshepsut's temple at Deir el-Bahri.
Museum excavations, 1920-1922. Acquired by the Museum in the division of finds, 1922.

Related Objects


Date: ca. 1700–1450 B.C. Medium: Wood Accession: 14.10.6 On view in:Gallery 113

Model of a Porch and Garden

Date: ca. 1981–1975 B.C. Medium: Wood, paint, copper Accession: 20.3.13 On view in:Gallery 105

Mummy Board of Iineferty

Date: ca. 1279–1213 B.C. Medium: Wood, gesso, paint, varnish Accession: 86.1.5c On view in:Gallery 126

Statuette of Huwebenef

Date: ca. 1550–1479 B.C. Medium: Wood Accession: 26.7.1414a, b On view in:Gallery 114

Estate Figure

Date: ca. 1981–1975 B.C. Medium: Wood, gesso, paint Accession: 20.3.7 On view in:Gallery 105