H. 8 cm (3 1/8 in.); W. 2.5 cm (1 in.); D. 2 cm (13/16 in.)
H. (with tang): 9.1 cm (3 9/16 in.)
Gift of Joseph W. Drexel, 1889
Not on view
This statuette depicts Ptah, the chief god of Egypt's capital city Memphis and master craftsman of the gods. He is easy to identify by his tight-fitting cap, straight beard (different from the usual curved divine beard on other gods), and enveloping mummiform garment. The garment has a stiff upper edge along the back of the neck, a feature that occurs with some regularity also on Osiris statuettes, but its meaning is unclear. The garment shows little definition of Ptah’s body, but his hands emerge from long vertical slits in the cloak, which are visible on the chest. He also wears a broad collar with a counterpoise and he carries a scepter. Ptah was a benevolent and approachable god, characteristics that may have inspired his devotees to dedicate numerous representations of him in the Late and Ptolemaic Periods.