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Block Statue of Harsiese, a Priest of Amun and Min

Egyptian, Classical, Ancient Near Eastern Art

On View: 19th Dynasty to Roman Period, Martha A. and Robert S. Rubin Gallery, 3rd Floor

Although few private stone statues were made during Dynasty XXI (circa 1070–945 B.C.), Dynasties XXII through XXV (circa 945–653 B.C.) witnessed their revival. Among the first sculptural types to reappear was the block statue, a distinctly Egyptian blending of abstract and naturalistic forms. The broad expanses of these squatting figures' robes often reflect another aspect of Third Intermediate Period art: a penchant for adorning a statue's garments with religious texts, symbols, and scenes.

This statue's main texts invoke Amun and Montu of Thebes on Harsiese's behalf, indicating the sculpture's probable provenance. The scenes of Osiris and of Harsiese adoring a symbol of Osiris are appeals for the perpetual favor of that deity. The statue is dated by details of its form and style. Some elements, such as the plain double wig and long, narrowly opened eyes, began to appear about 780–760 B.C.

CULTURE Egyptian
  • Possible Place Made: Thebes (Karnak), Egypt
  • DATES ca. 712–653 B.C.E.
    DYNASTY late Dynasty 25
    PERIOD Third Intermediate Period
    DIMENSIONS Height: 12 1/8 in. (30.8 cm)  (show scale)
    CREDIT LINE Gift of Charles Pratt
    CATALOGUE DESCRIPTION Fine grained black granodiorite squatting statue of the priest of Amen and Min, Harsiese. Bag wig, beard, arms crossed with left hand flat, palm down, right hand grasps an attribute. Feet not shown, body well modelled completely in the round. On front of body incised rectangle with eight columns and one line of incised inscription. On back of body, two columns of incised inscription ('local god formula'). On each side of body, Harsiese in incised relief is shown worshipping Osiris (right) and standard of Osiris (left) with inscriptions. Oblong base uninscribed. Condition: Intact.
    CAPTION Egyptian. Block Statue of Harsiese, a Priest of Amun and Min, ca. 712–653 B.C.E. Basalt, Height: 12 1/8 in. (30.8 cm). Brooklyn Museum, Gift of Charles Pratt, 51.15. Creative Commons-BY (Photo: Brooklyn Museum, CUR.51.15_NegA_print_bw.jpg)
    IMAGE front, CUR.51.15_NegA_print_bw.jpg. Brooklyn Museum photograph, 2015
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    RIGHTS STATEMENT Creative Commons-BY
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    Egyptian. <em>Block Statue of Harsiese, a Priest of Amun and Min</em>, ca. 712–653 B.C.E. Basalt, Height: 12 1/8 in. (30.8 cm). Brooklyn Museum, Gift of Charles Pratt, 51.15. Creative Commons-BY (Photo: Brooklyn Museum, CUR.51.15_NegA_print_bw.jpg)