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 Ankhesenpaaten in Stone 

Amarna Period, excavated in 1912-1913

Tell el-Amarna in House P 47 (1 or 2) , better known as the studio of the master sculptor Djhutmose.

It is composed of brown quartz and displays a high polish. The eyes and brows have been hollowed to receive glass inlays. The cosmetic line runs almost to the ears, which have been punched to receive studs. There are traces of red on the lips. A tenon on the neck remains for slotting this head onto a limestone body. This is a representation of one of the three senior princesses. The double curve of the medial line of the lips suggests to me that this is Ankhesenpaaten. When a statue was commissioned in the Amarna Period, the subject would go to a particular studio where the physical features would be quickly captured by the sculptor in wax or clay. It is from this initial exemplar that the finished piece would be modeled on. Thus, statuary are not carbon copies of an idealized iconography, but instead display the natural physical features of the subject portrayed. It is then often possible in Amarna art to identify the subject portrayed with a reasonable degree of accuracy.

Picture Courtesy: Ägyptisches Museum, Berlin


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