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Smenkhkare & Meritaten Stele - Berlin - Accession Date?

 
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sam54
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PostPosted: Mon May 28, 2012 11:39 pm    Post subject: Smenkhkare & Meritaten Stele - Berlin - Accession Date? Reply with quote

Hi everyone,

Unfortunately I'm having problems uploading an image of the stele, I think though that it's quite well known within Egyptological circles - the piece I'm interested in is unworked at its edges but bearing in polychrome colours a sunk relief scene possibly depicting Smenkhkare leaning on a staff and Meritaten offering a bouquet.

Does anyone know when this particular piece was discovered and where - I'm assuming Amarna and at some point in the 20's/30's but I'd like to know the exact date if possible?

I've tried accessing the online records at the Neues Museum Berlin but so far haven't had any success locating further details.

This piece has always intrigued me and obviously bears a strong resemblance to an inlaid scene on a casket from Tutankhamun's tomb, so the question is, does its find precede the tombs discovery in 1922 or after.

If after, I wonder if it may not be all that it seems to be, I hope not, but I'd like to get a little further towards the truth.

Many thanks in advance if anyone can point me in the right direction.

Sam
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EgyptianRose
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PostPosted: Tue May 29, 2012 12:31 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Sorry for intruding on your thread, though I have to wonder myself wether or not the artifact is actually depicting Smenkhkare and Meritaten, considering as you had previously pointed out it is very similiar to the depiction of Ankhesenamun and Tuankhamun on one of his box's found in his tomb? If it could in fact be Tutankhamun and Ankhesenamun them selves?

I don't believe there is any inscriptions relating the depiction to Smenkhkare and Meritaten, not that I have heard of yet anyway? I think it has just been assumed it's Smekhkare and Meritaten, so there for could it possibly be Ankhesenamun and Tutankhamun?

Sorry Sam54 I havn't answered any of your questions, in fact I have added more questions aha, again I'm sorry, though I am sure there is someone that will be able to answer your questions shortly enough =)
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It is of course the hieght of irony that, after this intensive campaign to expunge them from the annals of Egypt, the Amarna pharaohs are today probably the most recognized of all the country's ancient rulers!

Quote 'Amarna Sunset' by Aidan Dodson.
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Lutz
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PostPosted: Tue May 29, 2012 11:44 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

"Spaziergang im Garten" ("The stroll in the garden"), Berlin ÄMP 15 000.

Purchased by Heinrich Schäfer in 1900 from the dealer Mohamed Ali Gebri in Giza for the Royal Museums Berlin. Ali was at that time in the area of Giza and Cairo, the only Egyptian antiquities dealer, the rest were Greeks.

So, the provenence is unknown. Besides Amarna also the area around Memphis was supposed. There are no inscriptions on it. Which royal couple of the Amarna period is presented nobody can really say.

Greetings, Lutz.
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Lutz
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PostPosted: Tue May 29, 2012 12:16 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Earl L. Ertman : More Comments on New Kingdom Crown Streamers and the Gold Temple-Band They Held in Place. - In: The Journal of the Society for the Study of Egyptian Antiquities - JSSEA - 23. - 1993 [1996]. - ISSN : 0383-9753. - pp. 51 - 55.

and online but in German ...

Rolf Krauss : Der Berliner "Spaziergang im Garten" - Antiker Murks oder moderne Fälschung ? Mit einem Exkurs über Heinrich Schäfers Ägyptenaufenthalt 1898-1901. - In: PalArch's Journal of Archaeology of Egypt / Egyptology - 6-1. - 2009. - ISSN : 1567-214X. - pp. 1 - 20.

Greetings, Lutz.
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sam54
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PostPosted: Tue May 29, 2012 9:34 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi EgyptianRose,

You're spot on over the lack of inscription, it sure would have made our lives' a lot easier if they had gone to the trouble wouldn't it lol.

I might be wrong here, but the style (if it isn't a fake) looks to me like the later Amarna phase and I wonder if that would rule out Akhenaten (too old by that time to cut such a youthful figure) and I'm not sure that he went in for the same sort of youthful representation as Amenhotep III did later in his reign as an old man.

I guess too that Tutankhamun by the time he had Ankhesenamun as a consort that that style of art was less pronounced, which I suppose only leaves the enigmatic Smenkhkare as a contender and by extension Meritaten.

Thank-you Lutz for the links and info, one of these days I must attempt to learn German, google translation's only so good isn't - initially, as it was found prior to 1922 I thought maybe the consensus would be that it wasn't a forgery, but it doesn't seem that clear cut.

I wonder if there are any other iconographical sources that would allow a forger to create such a scene though, it seems so unlikely that if it were a fake that the person responsible was able to create a scene that then 20 or so years later turned out to have a counterpart from an impeccable context.

Thanks again, that's one less mystery and as is always the way with Egyptology now many more Smile
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khazarkhum
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PostPosted: Wed May 30, 2012 2:15 am    Post subject: Re: Smenkhkare & Meritaten Stele - Berlin - Accession Da Reply with quote

sam54 wrote:

This piece has always intrigued me and obviously bears a strong resemblance to an inlaid scene on a casket from Tutankhamun's tomb, so the question is, does its find precede the tombs discovery in 1922 or after.

If after, I wonder if it may not be all that it seems to be, I hope not, but I'd like to get a little further towards the truth.



There are many problems with this piece. What has always bothered me is the man's far leg. At the calf it makes a jarring narrowing, almost as though another leg was tacked on.

Considering the obvious nature of the error, one wonders why this was painted.
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Lutz
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PostPosted: Wed May 30, 2012 9:50 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

To the article by Krauss perhaps the following note. It has existed for years a personal enmity between Prof. Wildung and Mr. Krauss. The real reasons are not known to me, I was able to witness only the end almost live, as Prof. Wildung the dismissal of Mr. Krauss announced a few years ago before a lecture in the museum. I think there was some authority problem ... As an outsider, one had the impression Mr. Krauss could not deal with the fact that Prof. Wildung was appointed director of the Egyptian Museum in Berlin and he was not.

Since that there allways come from time to time such articles that questioned the authenticity of individual pieces in Berlin by Krauss (head of Hatshepsut, Nefertiti bust, and others). I could not really convinced yet. His arguments is generally easy to contradict.

I think Berlin ÄMP 15 000 is an exercise of a student. Possible, of course, seems to me also a kind of Ancient Egyptian "Polaroid", a private snapshot for the family?

Greetings, Lutz.
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EgyptianRose
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PostPosted: Wed May 30, 2012 10:33 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Interesting Lutz.

I am heading to Berlin this year, for christmas and I will be visiting the Berlin museum and I will not miss the bust of Neferteti, of course!

It is in my highest doubts that the bust of Neferteti and the head of Hatshepsut are fake, though the depiction of either Smekhkare/Meritaten or Tutankhamun/Ankhesenamun does make me wonder wether or not it is in fact real from after or during the Amarna period. My best assumption is that it is, considering it is rather similiar to a few other Amarna depictions.
_________________
It is of course the hieght of irony that, after this intensive campaign to expunge them from the annals of Egypt, the Amarna pharaohs are today probably the most recognized of all the country's ancient rulers!

Quote 'Amarna Sunset' by Aidan Dodson.
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