Hands offering Aten cartouches

New Kingdom, Amarna Period

On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 121

This unusual piece is composed of eight fragments, including a cast of one piece now in the British Museum; all of the pieces were found in the Sanctuary of the Great Aten Temple or in the dump south of the Sanctuary area of the temple. The double cartouches of the Aten's early name are presented by the two hands of a figure that is now missing.

Karnak reliefs depicted the king at a window of appearance presenting / proclaiming the 'didactic' names of the Aten with this gesture. These hands and cartouches in a very fine indurated limestone appear to have belonged to a very special statue at Amarna reiterating this presentation.

Hands offering Aten cartouches, Indurated limestone

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