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Relief from the Tomb of Mentuemhet
Relief from the Tomb of Mentuemhet
Third Intermediate Period, Dynasties 25–26, ca. 660 BC
Legion of Honor
Terrace Hallway West
Limestone With Polychrome
14 x 18 (35.6 x 45.7 cm)
Object Type:
Middle East
Accession Number:
Acquisition Date:
Credit Line:

Museum purchase, M.H. de Young Memorial Museum

No person in late Egyptian history stands out more clearly than Mentuemhat, the fourth priest of Amun, mayor of Thebes, and governor of Upper Egypt (in the south). He was the son of a prominent Theban family, and his tomb was one of the largest ever constructed in Egypt for a nonroyal. This fragment of a delicately cut wall relief, which retains most of its original paint, comes from his tomb in western Thebes. It contains portions of scenes from two registers. The lower scene shows part of a long line of offerings being brought to Mentuemhat. A man and a woman carry baskets of produce on their heads, and the vertical line of inscription designates the contents of the baskets and the owner of the provisions. The man at the right carries a basket of food, including cucumbers, loaves of bread, and a large head of lettuce. The woman holds fruit identified in the hieroglyphs as grapes. The upper register shows a man kneeling on the ground at a small, slanted table on which he cuts open a fish with a large knife. In front of him, prepared fish are displayed.

Contemporaneous Works “Art from the same century and country”

Spearhead or knife
Spearhead or knife (663 BC–332 BC)
Seal square, with hole
Seal square, with hole (663 BC–332 BC)
Djed column
Djed column (664 BC–525 BC)