Stela of Senu, Limestone

Stela of Senu

New Kingdom
Dynasty 18
reign of Amenhotep III
ca. 1390–1352 B.C.
From Egypt; Probably from Middle Egypt, Tuna el-Gebel
H. 75 cm (29 1/2 in); w. 32 cm (12 5/8 in)
Credit Line:
Rogers Fund, 1912
Accession Number:
On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 119
This stela depicts a royal scribe named Senu adoring the deities Imseti and Hapi, two of the four sons of Horus who protected the internal organs that were removed during mummification. Below, Senu's son, a lector priest named Pawahy, recites the funerary prayer inscribed in front of him. Another stela belonging to Senu is displayed in gallery 119 (18.2.5).
Top right

(1) [Dd mdw jn zXA.w]-nswt zXA.w nfr.w (2) snw
Di.n (3) [=i] jA.w m-(4)bAH*=tn
Szp (5) Htp=tn

[Words spoken by] the royal [scribe,] scribe of recruits, [Senu]
I have given homage before you.
Receive your offering.

Top left

(5) [jms.]tj nTr aA nb p.t
(6) Hp.y HqA jmn.t
(7) nTr.w jm.jw-xt (8) Wsjr ra nb m (9) dwA.t

[Imse]ti, great god, lord of heaven,
Hapi, ruler of the west,
the great gods who follow Osiris every day in the Netherworld.


(1) Dd mdw jn Xr.j-H(A)b.t pA-wAH.y n nTr.w (2) jm.jw mr-nxA.wj Sms.w n wn-nfr
(3) dj=tn Htp bA n zXA.w-nswt snw Hr (4) Snb.t=f Xnm=f Hw.t=f n.t D.t (5) xnm=f t’ gss.wt qbH.(6)tw{.tw} n=f mw rnp.w m hrw (7) n(.w) wp-rnp.t m Hzw.t n(.t) nTr (8) nb n nTr.t nb(.t)

Words spoken by the lector-priest Pawahy to the gods who are in the Lake of the Two Knives, the retainers of Wennefer:
May you grant that the ba of the royal scribe Senu would rest upon his chest, joining his enclosure of eternity and enjoying bread and half-breads, fresh water being poured for him on the days of the New-year's (festival) through the favor of every god and of every goddess.


* The preposition m-bAH is uncharacteristically written with the sign W10 following it. This may be the result of an assimilation with a similar preposition m-ab.

**The Lake of the Two Knives is tied to the local mythology of Hermopolis and said to be the sacred water from which the sun god came into being. For further discussion, cf. Altenmüller 1966.

Allon 2016
Purchased in Cairo from Maurice Nahman, 1912.

Hayes, William C. 1959. Scepter of Egypt II: A Background for the Study of the Egyptian Antiquities in the Metropolitan Museum of Art: The Hyksos Period and the New Kingdom (1675-1080 B.C.). Cambridge, Mass.: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 273, fig. 167.

Dorman, Peter F., Prudence Harper, and Holly Pittman 1987. Egypt and the Ancient Near East in The Metropolitan Museum of Art. New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, pp. 58, 59.