Art/ Collection/ Art Object

Canopic Chest of Khonsu

New Kingdom, Ramesside
Dynasty 19
reign of Ramesses II
ca. 1304–1237 B.C.
From Egypt, Upper Egypt, Thebes, Deir el-Medina, Tomb of Sennedjem (TT 1), Egyptian Antiquities Service/Maspero excavations, 1885–86
Wood, gesso, paint, varnish
Overall h. 44.5 cm (17 1/2 in); w. 48.2 cm (19 in); d. 55.4 cm (21 13/16 in)
Lid: w. 42.5 cm (16 3/4 in); d. 43.5 cm (17.1/8 in)
Credit Line:
Funds from various donors, 1886
Accession Number:
86.1.3a, b
On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 126
The canopic box, made for Khonsu (see 86.1.1a, b and 86.1.2a, b), has a shrine-shaped lid and the typical Egyptian cavetto cornice around the upper edge. It is built on sledge runners, and there are two knobs for tying the lid shut. The interior is divided into four compartments for the storage of the four internal organs. The lid is decorated with two images of Anubis as a jackal, and the sides of the box are decorated with the goddesses Isis and Nephthys, Selkit and Neith, and the Four Sons of Horus, protectors of the internal organs. The inscriptions assure Khonsu of their protection. Other objects in the collection that were discovered in the same tomb are numbered 86.1.1–86.1.29
Excavated by Gaston Maspero for the Egyptian Antiquities Service, 1885-1886. Sold to the Metropolitan Museum of Art by the Egyptian government, 1886.

Hayes, William C. 1959. Scepter of Egypt II: A Background for the Study of the Egyptian Antiquities in the Metropolitan Museum of Art, Part II: The Hyksos Period and the New Kingdom (1675-1080 B.C.). Cambridge, Mass.: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, p. 418, fig. 266.

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