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Category

funerary equipment

Name

cartonnage

School/Style

Egyptian

Description

mummy cartonnage, gilt, separate casing for feet. The foot case has some surface damage around the edges and on the upper section of the front panel. There are stains of a resinous material that appears to be ancient on the bottom and the sides. The bottom of the foot-case is decorated with two bound and naked captives: a Libyan on the left and an Asiatic on the right. The two are tethered together by a chain. The Libyan is identified by his shoulder-length hair, curled at the end, and his long beard. He stands on his right foot, his left leg is raised and bound to the back of his right thigh and the arms are held together at his back and tied together at the top. The Asiatic can be identified by his short wig and pointed beard. He stands facing the Libyan but is bound in a different way: his wrists are tied behind his back and his right leg is raised and tied in front of him to his left thigh. These people were two of the traditional enemies of Egypt. Their image trampled underfoot was initially reserved for royal iconography but by the Roman period the motif was common on the foot cases of private individuals. Between the two captives is a rectangular panel decorated with a floral motif. The front of the foot-case is divided into panels decorated with rosettes, lozenges and wadjet eyes with a central lotus flower and bud motif. At the top are two gold feet, a reference to the use of gold in the embalming process, and two bands perhaps representing the lower section of a garment. Some examples of foot-cases show the sandals but on this particular example the feet are bare. The feet are surrounded by cross-hatching, decorated in diagonal bands of black, pink, blue and white pigment. The mummy to which the foot-case belongs was found by Sir William Matthew Flinders Petrie during his excavations at Hawara in the Faiyum. It was placed within a two-room tomb with five other bodies, a further two being placed one on top of the other in a smaller chamber. Petrie wrote in his publication of the finds: '[Grave] F was a unique burial with cartonnage head-piece unusually large, having a wreath of loose leaves of gilt canvas and green berries between them, in the hands a red wreath and a candle. The rhombic bandage was in five layers with gilt buttons, and two rows of buttons on the chest. The foot-case was gilt. (Cambridge).' The cartonnage torso and head is also preserved in the Fitzwilliam Museum. The whereabouts of the mummy with its 'rhombic' dressings is unknown and it may have been left on the site.

Field Collection

Hawara Egypt

Dimensions

length 75 cm
width 14.5 cm

Period

Roman

Date

A.D. 20 — A.D. 100

Provenance

given: the Egypt Exploration Fund 1911 (Filtered for: Antiquities)

Documentation

  1. Grimm, G.
    Mumienmasken [page: ]
    [comments: p.127]
  2. Parlasca, K.
    Mumienporträts und verwandte Denkmäler [page: ]
    [comments: pl.5,1 p.107]
  3. Petrie, W.M.F.
    Roman portraits and Memphis (4) [page: ]
    [comments: pl.XXIII,6,F, p.3-4]
  4. Ashton, S.A.
    (2004) Roman Egyptomania , London : Golden House Publications (2004) London: Golden House Publications [page: 126 & 127]

Material/s

plaster

Accession Number

E.103b.1911 (Antiquities)
(Reference Number: 51331; Input Date: 2003-03-25 / Last Edit: 2011-07-12)

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