Rectangular Linen Chest

New Kingdom
Dynasty 18, early
reign of Thutmose II–Early Joint reign
ca. 1492–1473 B.C.
From Egypt, Upper Egypt, Thebes, Sheikh Abd el-Qurna, Tomb of Hatnefer and Ramose (below TT 71), MMA excavations, 1935–36
wood, gesso
L. 75 cm (29 1/2 in.); W. 46.5 cm (18 5/16 in.); H. 46.5 cm (18 5/16 in.); Th. of boards 2-2.5 cm (13/16-1 in.)
Credit Line:
Rogers Fund, 1936
Accession Number:
36.3.55a, b
On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 116
This simple rectangular box with a flat lid was whitewashed inside and out. Two battens on the underside of the lid hold it in place when closed and battens on the bottom of the box hold it above the floor surface. The box is made of sycamore and the two knobs at the front (one on the box and one on the lid are made of a harder wood, perhaps tamarisk. A length of linen cord was wound around these knobs and a piece of mud applied to the cord was impressed with a square seal.

Inside the box were 25 linen sheets, the majority of which had been used before being buried in Hatnefer's tomb (36.3.1). A number of the sheets had ink inscriptions (see 36.3 151). All but one of the sheets had been cleaned and most were folded into small bundles and carefully packed into the box. At the top, several sheets had been partially folded placed in the box, and pushed down around the edges of the sheets below.
Excavated by the Egyptian Expedition of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, 1935–1936. Acquired by the Museum in the division of finds, 1936.