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Sunk Relief of Queen Neferu

Egyptian, Classical, Ancient Near Eastern Art

On View: Old Kingdom to 18th Dynasty, Egyptian Galleries, 3rd Floor
These fragments originally belonged to a scene showing royal hairdressers attending Queen Neferu (see accompanying reconstruction). The relief on the right depicts Neferu, identified as “The King’s Wife,” wearing an elaborate beaded collar. Behind her the hairdresser Henut has already pinned one strand of hair in place and twists another one. The relief on the left depicts the hairdresser Inu holding a triple lock of hair that she will attach to Neferu’s coiffure.
MEDIUM Limestone, pigment
DATES ca. 2008-1957 B.C.E.
DYNASTY second part of Dynasty 11
PERIOD Middle Kingdom
DIMENSIONS 7 1/2 x 9 5/16 x 3/4 in. (19 x 23.6 x 1.9 cm)
MUSEUM LOCATION This item is on view in Old Kingdom to 18th Dynasty, Egyptian Galleries, 3rd Floor
CREDIT LINE Charles Edwin Wilbour Fund
CATALOGUE DESCRIPTION Fragment of limestone relief. In sunk relief, at right a queen, preserved head to breast; behind her, partially preserved, representation of “the hairdresser Hnnwt” braiding her wig. Queen’s name is lost. Condition: Minor chips on surface, otherwise intact. Colors; remains of black on hairpin, eye and wig. Necklace, register of light blue, then green and again blue. Scattered remains of red guide lines.
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