Art/ Collection/ Art Object
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Statue of a Female Figure

Period:
Middle Kingdom
Dynasty:
Dynasty 12, late–early 13
Date:
ca. 1850–1640 B.C. ?
Geography:
From Egypt, Memphite Region, Lisht North, cemetery east of Senwosret (758), Pit 752, MMA excavations, 1906–07
Medium:
Faience, paint
Dimensions:
H. 12.7 cm (5 in)
Credit Line:
Rogers Fund, 1908
Accession Number:
08.200.18
On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 113
Female figures of this type, often found with burials especially of the Middle Kingdom, were in the past called "concubines." Nowadays they are understood in a more general sense as representions of the life giving female powers of sexual attraction and giving birth, powers from which the dead could derive a new life. As most representatives of the type, this faience figure lacks the lower legs and has elaborate tatoos all over its body. The figure also wears a girdle of cowrie shell shaped beads and a long bead necklace crossed over the chest. The hair is arranged in the so-called "Hathor" style–two thick tresses with curled ends falling forward over the shoulders.
Excavated by the Egyptian Expedition of the Metropolitan Museum of Art. Acquired by the Museum in the division of finds.

Hayes, William C. 1953. Scepter of Egypt I: A Background for the Study of the Egyptian Antiquities in The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Part I: From the Earliest Times to the End of the Middle Kingdom. New York: Metropolitan Museum of Art, p. 220, fig. 137.

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