Skip Navigation

Crocodile Stela

Egyptian, Classical, Ancient Near Eastern Art

The Egyptians harnessed the powers of a ferocious animal to ward off danger. In marshy areas inhabited by crocodiles, people living nearby identified this animal with their town god. Here, the divine crocodile is on a shrine with an offering table in front of him.

This fragment of a stela (commemorative stone slab) originally illustrated a prayer invoking the crocodile god Sobek, who provided all that the deceased needed in the next world.
MEDIUM Limestone
  • Possible Place Made: Dahamsha, Egypt
  • DATES ca. 1295-1070 B.C.E.
    DYNASTY Dynasty 19 to Dynasty 20
    PERIOD New Kingdom
    DIMENSIONS 9 3/4 x 6 x 2 7/8 in. (24.8 x 15.2 x 7.3 cm)
    MUSEUM LOCATION This item is not on view
    ACCESSION NUMBER 67.174
    CREDIT LINE Charles Edwin Wilbour Fund
    RECORD COMPLETENESS
    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.