Figure of a crouching lion (or game piece) - ROM2018_16165_36


Figure of a crouching lion (or game piece)

Geography: Excavated at Abydos, Egypt
Date: c. 3100-2686 BC
Period: 1st-2nd Dynasty, Early Dynastic Period
4.2 x 8.6 x 3.2 cm
Object number: 905.2.83
On view
Gallery Location:Galleries of Africa: Egypt

This little ivory lion was carved in the same classic form, with slim body, benighn head, forepaws outstretched and tail curved around its right haunch as would later be used for the Great Sphinx of Giza, and countless other Ancient Egyptian representations of lions. The lioness retains incised traces of a collar, suggesting the original was a domesticated animal.

This beautiful little animal was once part of a set of game pieces, which consisted of both lions and lionesses, coloured marbles, and a board shaped like a coiled serpent.  Similar pieces have been found at Elephantine.

The ivory has been damaged by fire and time.

Object History: Excavated by the Egypt Exploration Society, 1902-1904
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