Favorite Egyptian Pieces

I've decided to start up a new series here featuring ancient Egyptian "art" pieces on a semi-regular basis. At some point I will also put together a post explaining why I have art in quotation marks up there - today my brain is simply not up to it.

I thought I would inaugurate the series with one of my very favorite pieces from the tomb of Tutankhamun. The goddess statues from the canopic shrine - Isis, Selket, Neith, and Nephthys. The goddesses stand with their bodies toward the shrine, arms outstretched, faces to the side in a protective pose on the edges of the shrine containing Tutankhamun's preserved internal organs. The symbols on their heads indicate their identities. They wear very fine pleated linen gowns typical of the late 18th Dynasty. It is their faces in particular that I adore - the sweet, serene expressions are absolutely captivating to me.

Here is an image of the shrine itself in the Cairo Museum. Isis and Selket are visible:

And here is a closer view of Selket:
Personally, I think the finest photos of the Tutankhamun objects were probably taken by Harry Burton, the original expedition photographer "loaned" to Howard Carter by the Metropolitan Museum, New York. There is (or was) a traveling special exhibit of Burton's photos and there is also a lovely book featuring them.

Photo credits:
Photo of the outer canopic shrine by Gérard Ducher located at Wikimedia Commons
Photo of Selket by Snofru located at Wikimedia Commons

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