Art/ Collection/ Art Object
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Scarab Inscribed for Maatkare (Hatshepsut)

Period:
New Kingdom
Dynasty:
Dynasty 18, early
Reign:
Joint reign of Hatshepsut and Thutmose III
Date:
ca. 1479–1458 B.C.
Geography:
From Egypt, Upper Egypt, Thebes, Deir el-Bahri, Temple of Hatshepsut, MMA excavations, 1926–27
Medium:
Steatite (glazed)
Dimensions:
L. 1.4 cm (9/16 in.); W. 1 cm (3/8 in.); H. 0.6 cm (1/4 in.)
Credit Line:
Rogers Fund, 1927
Accession Number:
27.3.229
On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 116
During the 1926-1927 excavation season, the Museum's Egyptian Expedition uncovered three foundation deposits along the eastern enclosure wall of Hatshepsut's funerary temple at Deir el-Bahri in Western Thebes. Among the contents were 299 scarabs and stamp-seals. Sixty-five of these are now in the Egyptian Museum, Cairo, and the rest were acquired by the Museum in the division of finds.

Among the inscriptions on the bases of these scarabs and seals are examples of every title Hatshepsut held, from the time she was "king's daughter" during the reign of her father, Thutmose I; through the time she was queen of her half-brother, Thutmose II; and during her regency and co-reign with her nephew/step-son, Thutmose III.

The inscription on the base of this scarab records Hatshepsut's throne name, Maatkare, enclosed in a cartouche and flanked by feathers that symbolize the goddess Maat (truth). Above the cartouche is a winged sun disk and below, a shape similar to a neb hieroglyph (Lord) fills the space. The name Maatkare may be roughly translated as Maat is the life force of Re (the sun god).
Museum excavations, 1926–1927. Acquired by the Museum in the division of finds, 1927.

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