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Home > Auctions > 6th September 2022 > Egyptian Cartonnage Trapping for the Daughter of Imhotep

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LOT 0050

GBP (£) 400 - 600
EUR (€) 480 - 720
USD ($) 490 - 730

Bid History: 3   |   Current bid: £420 (+bp*)

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Bid History: 3   |   Current bid: £420

A polychrome cartonnage portion for the daughter of Imhotep; the central column of cursive hieroglyphic text bordered on both sides by three pictorial registers: the top register showing two seated deities or magical guardians; the middle register right panel depicting two of the Four Sons of Horus, responsible for protecting the internal organs of the deceased, shown wielding a knife emphasising their protective role; the lower register decorated with stylised leaves and petals of the lotus plant (Seshen); the inscription with orthographic peculiarities, possibly due to the artisan running out of space towards the end of the column, which can be read in the context as: “....Horet, true of voice, born (daughter) of Iymhotep, true of voice, come bring (offerings) for Anubis lord of embalming that he may give wrapping(s of) fine and sweet (smelling) linen (and) grant (to) her (a) burial for eternity”; mounted on a custom-made display stand. 8 1/4 in. (130 grams total, 21 cm high including stand). [No Reserve]

Acquired before 1970.
Private London, UK, collection.
With Nefer Ancient Art, UK.
Property of a Sussex, UK, teacher.
Accompanied by a copy of a Nefer Ancient Art certificate of authenticity.
Accompanied by an academic report by Egyptologist Paul Whelan.

Cf. The Egypt Centre, Swansea,, for a cartonnage apron element; Yale Peabody Museum, 006835, for a complete set of cartonnage trappings.

This cartonnage trapping was one element of a multi-part set, usually consisting of four to six individual pieces that were sewn onto the front of a mummified body. The basic set consisted of a mask, a pectoral, an apron, and ‘sandals’ or a foot cover. Such adornments, including this fine example, are made of sheets of linen soaked in an adhesive solution of plaster or resin. The curved end and relatively modest width of this fragment indicate that it belonged to the terminal end of an apron element, positioned below the pectoral and mask. The particular treatment of the lotus flowers, the coloured borders, the figurative elements, and the central column of text compares with provenanced examples from the Theban region, suggesting that it also came from a tomb there.