Shabti of Divine Adoratrix Henuttawy - ROM2019_17387_45


Shabti of Divine Adoratrix Henuttawy

Medium:Glazed composition (Egyptian faience)
Geography: Western Thebes, Luxor, Egypt
Date: c. 980-930 BC
Period: late 21st Dynasty or early 22nd Dynasty, 3rd Intermediate Period
16 × 5.1 × 4 cm
Object number: 984.32.1
On view
Gallery Location:Galleries of Africa: Egypt

Mummiform female shabti figurine of the Divine Adoratrix Henut-tawy, who was likely a daughter of Pinudjem II.  The existence of this woman is only attested by a group of her shabti figurines which seem to have been found at the Ramesseum in western Thebes, where a Third Intermediate Period cemetery was found among the storechambers of the earlier funerary temple of Ramesses II.  Shabtis are small mummiform figurines placed in tombs to assist the deceased in the Afterworld with corvée labour, as detailed in Spell 6 of The Book of the Dead. In the 3rd Intermediate Period it became common for tomb owners to be provided with a shabti for every day of the year.

This shabti figure is mould-made of turquoise blue faience. The surface is damaged, discoloured, and several pieces have flaked off; there are accretions as well especially on the lower back of the figure. She wears a tripartite wig with long front lappets. There is a fillet tied with loop and 2 streamers over the long wig which ends onn the back in a horizontal ridge about waist length. A black-painted cross-hatch basket occupies the bottom 1.5 cm of the wig on the back. The facial features (eyes, ears, nose and mouth) appear to have been moulded, but are worn. The only indication of paint is on the right eyebrow. Her moulded arms are crossed on the chest, left over right, at about waist level. She appears to hold a black-painted hoe in each hand as well as a cord attached to the basket. Five lines of horizontal inscription cover the lower part of the figure. The front of the foot up to the level of the ankle is broken off; originally more text would have covered the foot.

Shabtis of the Divine Adoratrix Henut-tawy are found in many museum collections around the world.  For example, her shabtis are found in museums in Berlin (Germany), Cairo (Egypt), Chicago (USA), Cracow (Poland), Dublin (Ireland), London (British Museum and University College), as well as in a number of private collections.

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