Art/ Collection/ Collection/ Art Object

Figure of Neith

Period:
Late Period
Dynasty:
Dynasty 27–30
Date:
664–332 B.C.
Geography:
From Egypt
Medium:
Bronze or copper alloy
Dimensions:
H. 22.9 cm (9 in.)
Credit Line:
Gift of Darius Ogden Mills, 1904
Accession Number:
04.2.447
On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 130
Neith was a powerful goddess with many different aspects, but was perhaps best known in the first millennium BC as the goddess of the powerful city of Sais in the Delta. In copper alloy she is represented in anthropomorphic form. She wears the red crown, otherwise known as the Lower Egyptian crown, and the long form-fitting dress common to many goddesses. Her arm position suggests that she may have held a scepter in her outstretched hand and perhaps an ankh sign in the other. Sometimes on more elaborate figures, her crown is striped, usually with precious metal inlay, as seen on 26.7.846. The base had an inscription, but it is now illegible.
Although Neith was worshipped from the beginning of Egyptian history to the end, her cult grew to great prominence in the 26th dynasty, when her cult center Sais became the capital of the Saite dynasty kings. The many statuettes of this goddess attest to her popularity as a dedication in the 26th dynasty and later.
Collection of Judge Elbert E. Farman, formed when he was U.S. consul general in Egypt 1876–84. Donated to the museum by Darius Ogden Mills, New York, in 1904.

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