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Amenhotep III as a Fertility god

 
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Rozette
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PostPosted: Thu Oct 04, 2007 6:37 pm    Post subject: Amenhotep III as a Fertility god Reply with quote

Amenhotep III as a Fertility God

Serpentine
Metropolitan Museum of Arts, New York
no. 30.8.74

The back of the statuette is shaped like a djed-pillar, bound sheaves of vegetation. The hieroglyph for "stability", djed, is also an emblem for Osiris as an agricultural deity. Beneath the top of the pillar is the text: "the good god, the image of Amen-Ra, whom he loved more than any king, the king of Upper and Lower Egypt, the lord of the two lands, Nebmaatra,given life forever.

The socle inscription before the king's right foot reads "the good god Nebmaatra, the son of Ra, Amenhotep ruler of Thebes".

Note that the king is termed not "beloved of Amen-Ra", but "the image of Amen-Ra whom he loved more than any king " is the sole reference to that god.

Another monument in which the djed-pillar figures prominently, the tomb of Kheruef in Thebes, exhibits similar wording. There the king raises the pillar and then offers it to a "Personified Djed-Pillar".
The text states :
Presenting great offerings consisting of catlle and every good and pure thing for Osiris, ruler of eternity. Tahe good god, lord of the two lands, Nebmaatra, the son of Ra of his body, Amenhotep, ruler of Thebes, the image of Ra before the two lands, whom he loves more than any king.

It is difficult not to conclude that the similarity of texts is intentional. More important is that the scene from Kheruef's applies to the king's third sed-festival, as is apparent from several texts, both in the kiosk scene left of this and in the raising of the djed-pillar scene proper. The date of Year 37 is prominently noted. The statuette, therefore , by its parellelism with this ceremony, has a date within the last two years of Amenhotep III's reign.Very likely, it memorialized the king's third jubilee.

Amenhotep III was the first to wear this unusual outfit seen here, consisting of an ankle-lenght tunic, fringed at the hem, and a pleated shawl that covers the left arm and shoulder but leaves the right bare. The shawl ties beneath the breast by means of its selvage, and a fringed hem runs vertically down over the front of the king's tunic. The shawl does not close over the tunic between the waist and ankle. At his neck is a floral collar, probably the "wah. Clearly he wore a blue crown on his head, since steamers are visible on both sides of the neck. On Amenhotep III's feet are sandals, seldom seen on royal statues, but not unknown
.


Emile Chassinat believed that the garment had foreign origins, as did the king's gesture, hands held across the belly.
The statuette itself is undoubtedly Egyptian, only the undergarment is now believed to be Near Eastern.
Amenhotep IV appeared in exactly these garments in the tomb of Ramose TT55, where he is shown distributing gifts to foreign envoys.
On a small shrine from Tutankhamun's tomb, the king wears this outfit four times., with an added apron.
Kozloff and Bryan
Egypt's Dazzling Sun
p. 204-205
http://www.insecula.com/Photos/00/00/02/73/ME0000027376_3.JPG
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anneke
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PostPosted: Thu Oct 04, 2007 7:41 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

That's an interesting piece. It seems to come from Thebes?
Does it come from Malqata or from one of the temples?

I can't really get a sense of the height of this piece. Would it have been a small statuette? I'm trying to imagine the purpose it may have served.
It's strange that it seems to depict the king with somewhat foreign styled clothes and attitude.
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Rozette
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PostPosted: Fri Oct 05, 2007 12:24 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote Anneke :
It seems to come from Thebes?

According to Kozloff and Bryan it was probably first acquired in modern times in Thebes. This rumored provenance agrees with the inscription's invocation of Amen-Ra, though it remains unproven.

Quote Anneke : I can't really get a sense of the height of this piece. Would it have been a small statuette?

The statuette is 22,5 h and the name of the god Amun has been chiseled out.
For three very good pictures of this statuette :
CHASSINAT (Émile) Une statuette d'Aménôthès III [avec 3 planches]. 169-172 • BIFAO 7
http://www.ifao.egnet.net/doc/PubEnLigne/BIFAO/Sommaires/BIFAO_007.php

Quote Anneke : I'm trying to imagine the purpose it may have served.

The swollen image may itentionally associate Amenhotep III with the androgynous fertility god's, particularly Happy of the Nile. The black stone identified the image with rich rejuvenating power of the land. Here, the presence of a djed-pillar underlines the king's association, as an image of Amen-Ra, with the sun's life-giving power.
Like the king's presentations depicted in the tomb of Kheruef, the statuette may have been among the offerings to Osiris Ruler of Eternity.
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PostPosted: Fri Oct 26, 2007 12:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Very Happy Thats a great piece.

I found the hand positions of the king intriguing and the suggestion that it could be foreign inspired, this must be a unique representation of a king in this way.

Coincidentally on the topic of foreign influences at this time I'd just been looking at Kheruefs tomb on Osiris Net. Taking part in the kings first heb sed are 8 foreign princesses he translates the text as 'Girls of the Great' and suggests they are daughters of foreign kings and have been raised in egypt.
The scene was interesting since the foreign girls are relatively prominent, even performing purification, and also their headware that Anneke had commented on a while ago. On the other side of the room is the scenes of Amenhoteps third festival and on the throne of Tiye she is shown as a sphinx tramping two enemy woman and she is wearing headware much like the foreign princesses - the sharp square box look, except Tiye wears a uraeus. The photo does'nt show it well but I saw this scene myself just last week.
Tiye is sometimes shown wearing a more sloping version of 'the box' topped with plumes and solar disk and its possible that space on the throne scene did'nt allow for plumes, but its definately more boxy than her other head gear. It was something I found curious anyway as I'd seen Ahmose Nefertari depicted on a stela wearing very similar box-ware also.

Sorry did'nt mean to turn this into a headware topic, it was just the foreign comment that caught my attention and made me curious; as in Kheruefs tomb he says that research was done into the past prior to the heb sed in order to ensure the purity of the ceremonial rituals, and I wondered how that sat with these few foreign inspired representations of Amen III and Akhenaten - diplomacy at work perhaps and not integral to the rituals, yet the statuette implies a connection to the festival?
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 29, 2010 1:40 am    Post subject: Text on the back of Amenhotep statue at the Metropolitan Reply with quote

Hi everyone:

This is my first post. I'm looking forward to learning with all of you. In looking at the back of the small statue of Amenhotep III in the Met's exhibit "Tut's Funeral", I was trying to read the back of it, and I assumed the text after "The perfect god", was something like "whom Amun loves more than an any god".

Rozette translates the text as "image of Amun Re, whom he loves...". But I don't quite see this. Is "jmn-ra" honorifically transposed? And if so, what is the sign immediately before "mr"? I'm not doubting Rozette's translation, I'm just trying to see how he arrived at his conclusion. A couple of the glyphs might be damaged (or maybe its just my photo), but I can't make out "twt jmn-ra", assuming that is what is written.

If someone can tell me how to post a photo, I'll be glad to do so.

Thanks everyone,

John
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anneke
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 29, 2010 2:32 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Welcome to Egyptian Dreams Very Happy

The translation is by Kozloff and Bryan actually. Rozette is quoting from a book.

Posting a picture requires uploading it to a sharing site like photobucket or imageshack. Then use the "img" format.

Code:
[img]http://i236.photobucket.com/albums/ff121/bart-anneke/back-amenhotep.jpg[/img]


The code above will give this image:



And here is the text:



And a profile pic showing the stile:


All from:
CHASSINAT (Émile) Une statuette d'Aménôthès III [avec 3 planches]. 169-172 • BIFAO 7
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JohnCorridan
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 29, 2010 4:44 pm    Post subject: Text on Metropolitan statue of Amunhotep III Reply with quote

Thank you for posting the photo, and for clarifying the origin of the translation. With all due respect to those concerned, I am not entirely convinced of the translation. Is the transliteration "nTr nfr wr jmn-ra ..." (this doesn't seem to what is written). And if so, is "image" written as a word containing "wr" root, rather than "twt"?
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anneke
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 29, 2010 5:57 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm not an expert, so hopefully someone else will put in their 2 cents worth Very Happy

Given the damage to the inscription:



It seems this is a reconstruction of the text:



The transliteration would be something like this I think:

nTr nfr Im[n Re] wr [...] mr n f r nswt n neb nsw bity neb tawy (neb maat re)| di anx Dt ....

So the translation "the good god, the image of Amen-Ra, whom he loved more than any king, the king of Upper and Lower Egypt, the lord of the two lands, Nebmaatra,given life forever" would mean that the "little bird" after Amun-Re should refer to the "image"?

Not sure how that works out exactly to be honest. The "twt" you mention means "image" (as in Tutankhamen), I have no idea if they think the "wr" is actually an "w" (different bird) or if there is another word which means "image".

Hopefully someone else has a better answer.

Anneke
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Lutz
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 29, 2010 7:14 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hello,

some years ago we had a discussion in German Ägyptologie - Forum about Djed-Pillars with five instead of four crossbeams. Here is an example from the collection at the Louvre (taken by one of our members in 2004) :



Other very rare examples are known to me, for instance, from the museum in Hildesheim (Germany). At that time we found no real explanation of this special form.

If I look at the back of Amenhotep III. I see for the first time an example of this Djed-Pillar with five instead of four crossbeams on a statue :



Maybe someone here has an idea? Or knows other examples (amulet, statue, relief)?

Greetings, Lutz.
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Kevin
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 29, 2010 9:09 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The post above contained a link to the German forum mentioned. For whatever reason it was causing the post to not show. I've removed the link to allow the rest of the post to show. Sorry for any inconvenience.
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Toth
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 29, 2010 9:37 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks, Kevin, much appreciated

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anneke
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 29, 2010 11:45 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Is that really the cross bars we are seeing though?
It seems that there is a a collection of bands below the cross bars. It looks like what we are seeing on Amenhotep's statue may be this bands?

In this scene form the tomb of Kheruef the djed pillar has the four cross bars, but it has 5 bands below it.

[img]http://i236.photobucket.com/albums/ff121/bart-anneke/djed-raising.jpg{/img]

I had never noticed that there were djed pillars with 5 bars. I would have to look around more for other examples.
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PostPosted: Fri Jul 30, 2010 1:33 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

anneke wrote:
Is that really the cross bars we are seeing though? It seems that there is a a collection of bands below the cross bars. It looks like what we are seeing on Amenhotep's statue may be this bands? ... Tomb of Kheruef the djed pillar has the four cross bars, but it has 5 bands below ...




Could be ... However, would be probably rather an unusual composition? We have still to complement then the crossbeams. Very difficult to work out from the hard stone, empty behind the head with (Chepresch?) crown.

anneke wrote:
... I had never noticed that there were djed pillars with 5 bars. I would have to look around more for other examples.

Maybe only for Kings and Gods with weight problems... Laughing

Greetings, Lutz.
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