Art/ Collection/ Collection/ Art Object
{{img.publicCaption}}

Bust of a priestly figure

Period:
Late Period–Ptolemaic Period
Date:
400–200 B.C.
Geography:
From Egypt
Medium:
Limestone
Dimensions:
H. 19 cm (7 1/2 in); W. 14.6 cm (5 3/4 in.); D. 12 cm (4 3/4 in.)
Credit Line:
Rogers Fund, 1907
Accession Number:
07.228.1
On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 134
Small Late Period and Ptolemaic reliefs or sculptures that depict a subject in a partial or unfinished way but are themselves finished objects constitute a special class of object. Guidelines like those for artists are often prominently exhibited as part of the object, although, in fact, many instances can be noted where the object simply could not serve as a suitable model for a traditional formal Egyptian representation. Personifications of kingship, figures that may represent the now emerging demigods Imhotep and Amenhotep Son of Hapu, and popular gods like Harpokrates or Isis, are heavily represented within the corpus.

Taken together, the figures represented and the other features indicate the reliefs and sculptures of this class, sometimes called by Egyptologists "sculptor’s models / votives," were the material of a donation practice, perhaps connected with the prolific temple building of these centuries. Unfortunately there is little to illuminate us about the mechanics of such a donation practice.

This bust represents a shaven-headed figure who resembles representations of the divine sage Imhotep.
Formerly Timmins Collection. Purchased by the Museum in Egypt from Panayotis Kitycas, 1907.

Lythgoe, Albert M. 1907. "Recent Egyptian Acquisitions." In The Metropolitan Museum of Art Bulletin, vol. 2, no. 12 (December), p. 195.

Related Objects

Bust of an Official

Date: 380–342 B.C. Medium: Graywacke Accession: 25.2.1 On view in:Gallery 127

Sculptor's model/votive depicting a king and jackal busts

Date: 664–525 B.C. Medium: Limestone, red paint traces Accession: 21.6.24 On view in:Gallery 130

Royal bust

Date: 400–200 B.C. Medium: Limestone Accession: 54.76 On view in:Gallery 134

Bust of a royal figure with downward-hanging snake

Date: 400–200 B.C. Medium: Limestone Accession: 07.228.6 On view in:Gallery 134

Royal bust

Date: 400–200 B.C. Medium: Limestone Accession: 30.8.79 On view in:Gallery 134