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Art/ Collection/ Art Object
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Harpokrates in double crown

Period:
Late Period–Ptolemaic Period
Date:
664–30 B.C.
Geography:
From Egypt
Medium:
Cupreous metal
Dimensions:
H. 11.9 cm (4 11/16 in.); W. 2.9 cm (1 1/8 in.); D. 5.9 cm (2 5/16 in.)
Credit Line:
Gift of Helen Miller Gould, 1910
Accession Number:
10.130.1317
Not on view
The figure represents a child god in a striding/standing position, wearing the double crown, which alludes to his royal status. The child god is distinguished from adult gods by a range of iconographic clues: his nudity, the finger raised to the mouth (a child-like gesture), and the sidelock on the right side of his head. He wears an amulet on his chest, another attribute common to child gods but not adult gods.
Child gods grew in popularity and cult from the Third Intermediate Period onwards, rivaling even the most powerful and ancient gods, especially as temple offerings. Without an inscription, it can be very difficult to securely distinguish and identify particular child gods, but here the double crown identifies the god as Harpokrates (Horus the Child), who was the son of Osiris and Isis. This royal crown symbolizes the union of Lower and Upper Egypt, and highlights Horus’ role as the legitimate ruler of the entire land and his direct association with the king.
Formerly in the collection of the Reverend Chauncey Murch (died 1907). Collected between 1883 and 1906 while Murch was a missionary in Egypt. Collection purchased by the Museum from the Murch family with funds provided by Helen Miller Gould, 1910.

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