Skip Navigation

Face from an Anthropoid Coffin

Egyptian, Classical, Ancient Near Eastern Art

On View: Funerary Gallery 2, Martha A. and Robert S. Rubin Gallery, 3rd Floor
The rectangular hole in the chin of this carefully modeled face once held a false beard, which identified the owner of the coffin with Osiris, the god of the afterlife. The incisions housed inlaid eyebrows, cosmetic lines, and eyes of glass or stones. The flat back of the face attached with pegs to a separately carved anthropoid coffin.

Although determining a date is difficult without the coffin or inscriptions, stylistic details—the softly drilled corners of the mouth, the hint of a smile, the substantial, straight nose, and the lack of paint—suggest the object was made late in the Third Intermediate Period.
DATES 1075–656 B.C.E.
PERIOD Third Intermediate Period (probably)
DIMENSIONS 14 2/5 x 6 3/10 x 10 7/10 in. (36.6 x 16 x 27.2 cm)  (show scale)
CREDIT LINE Charles Edwin Wilbour Fund
CAPTION Face from an Anthropoid Coffin, 1075–656 B.C.E. Wood, 14 2/5 x 6 3/10 x 10 7/10 in. (36.6 x 16 x 27.2 cm). Brooklyn Museum, Charles Edwin Wilbour Fund, 37.2041.8E. Creative Commons-BY (Photo: Brooklyn Museum, 37.2041.8E_front_PS2.jpg)
IMAGE front, 37.2041.8E_front_PS2.jpg. Brooklyn Museum photograph, 2009
"CUR" at the beginning of an image file name means that the image was created by a curatorial staff member. These study images may be digital point-and-shoot photographs, when we don\'t yet have high-quality studio photography, or they may be scans of older negatives, slides, or photographic prints, providing historical documentation of the object.
You may download and use Brooklyn Museum images of this three-dimensional work in accordance with a Creative Commons license. Fair use, as understood under the United States Copyright Act, may also apply. Please include caption information from this page and credit the Brooklyn Museum. If you need a high resolution file, please fill out our online application form (charges apply). For further information about copyright, we recommend resources at the United States Library of Congress, Cornell University, Copyright and Cultural Institutions: Guidelines for U.S. Libraries, Archives, and Museums, and Copyright Watch. For more information about the Museum's rights project, including how rights types are assigned, please see our blog posts on copyright. If you have any information regarding this work and rights to it, please contact
Not every record you will find here is complete. More information is available for some works than for others, and some entries have been updated more recently. Records are frequently reviewed and revised, and we welcome any additional information you might have.