Block from a Relief Depicting a Battle

New Kingdom

On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 119

Builders reused this painted relief block in the foundation of Ramesses IV's mortuary temple, subsequently excavated by the Metropolitan Museum. In the relief, western Asian soldiers are shown being trampled under the horses that pull the royal chariot, signaling the foreigners' defeat in battle by the might of the Egyptian pharaoh. When the piece was excavated, this and another fragment of a battle scene (13.180.22) were dated to the reign of Ramesses II. A recent study of their stylistic and iconographic features, however, has caused scholars to redate them earlier, probably to the reign of Amenhotep II. This redating indicates that by the middle of the Eighteenth Dynasty, monumental battle scenes had become part of the decorative scheme of a temple's exterior walls.

Block from a Relief Depicting a Battle, Sandstone, paint

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