Relief from the South Wall of a Chapel of Ramesses I

New Kingdom, Ramesside

On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 129

Displayed in Gallery 129 are reliefs from three walls of the chapel of Ramesses I at Abydos. This monarch was a military officer from the eastern Delta. He served as a general and vizier under Haremhab, last king of Dynasty 18, and was designated by Haremhab as his successor. Ramesses was probably quite old when he became king and most of his monuments were finished by his son, Seti I.

The south wall of his temple at Abydos depicts Ramesses I and his family presenting offerings to Osiris. The upper register (now lost) showed Ramesses leading four young bulls to "Osiris Onnophris." In the lower register, Ramesses is shown "making incense and libation" over offerings piled before the shrine of "Osiris, lord of continuity, great god at home in Abydos." Behind the statue of Osiris stand the goddesses Isis and Hathor. Ramesses is accompanied by his queen, Sitre, who shakes two sistra. Behind her was a procession of men and women holding bouquets.

Ramesses I was the first king of Dynasty 19. He ascended the throne as an old man and was soon succeeded by his son, Seti I. Most of the monuments dedicated to Ramesses I, including this one, were built or completed by his son.

Relief from the South Wall of a Chapel of Ramesses I, Limestone

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