Relief of the Royal Ka
Egyptian, Classical, Ancient Near Eastern Art
On View: Old Kingdom to 18th Dynasty, Egyptian Galleries, 3rd Floor
According to Egyptian belief, the Royal Ka (soul) inhabited the legitimate king and migrated from the old to the new when the older king died. Some scholars have associated votive animal mummies with a ritual that strengthened the Royal Ka.
Here, an artist portrayed the Ka as a royal bust on a standard wearing a crown of ostrich feathers, cobras, and the short ram’s horns associated with Amun, king of the gods. The figure also wears a protective cobra on his forehead.
381-343 B.C.E. or 186-145 B.C.E.
Dynasty 30 or reign of Ptolemy VI
Late Period or Ptolemaic Period
9 13/16 x 14 x 1 3/4 in. (25 x 35.5 x 4.5 cm) (show scale)
Charles Edwin Wilbour Fund
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Relief of the Royal Ka, 381-343 B.C.E. or 186-145 B.C.E. Limestone, pigment, 9 13/16 x 14 x 1 3/4 in. (25 x 35.5 x 4.5 cm). Brooklyn Museum, Charles Edwin Wilbour Fund, 67.69.2. Creative Commons-BY (Photo: Brooklyn Museum (Gavin Ashworth,er), 67.69.2_Gavin_Ashworth_photograph.jpg)
overall, 67.69.2_Gavin_Ashworth_photograph.jpg. Brooklyn Museum photograph (Gavin Ashworth, photographer), 2012
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Fragmentary limestone slab with sunk relief representation of a king's bust, wearing an anedjty crown, on a standard pole with streamers; bearded. On the right sa sign and fillet bandelet ending in uraeus with white crown. On the left head of Horus hawk with part of red crown, probably originally mounting a serekh and the royal ka. Much color left: crown, yellow and red, the same as royal bust. Traces of color in other parts of the relief.
Condition: Lower edge probably ancient; all other sides fragmentary. Piece much discolored and somewhat chipped.
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