Seal impression

New Kingdom, Amarna Period

On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 122

The Egyptians did not have locks and keys. Instead, they would secure a chest or other container with a piece of knotted cord. A lump of clay was put over the knot and a seal was pressed into the clay. The cord would have to be cut, or the seal broken in order to open the container and remove the contents.

This clay sealing preserves a seal impression about the size of a ring that may have served as an official seal. The impression has the trone name of Tutankhamun, Nebkheperure, in the cartouche at the left. The king is represented as a sphinx trampelling an enemy.

Seal impression, Clay (unfired)

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