Relief of Mourning Women
Egyptian, Classical, Ancient Near Eastern Art
On View: Egyptian Orientation Gallery, 3rd Floor
New Kingdom funerals often featured female mourners wailing and gesturing dramatically. Although sometimes called “professional mourners,” more likely these local women joined the funeral procession to express solidarity and sorrow, and also to participate in a public event.
The sloppy carving and indistinct lines show that the sculptor of this tomb relief was relatively unskilled, but he did successfully convey how ancient women demonstrated grief by throwing dust on their heads and even falling to the ground. The different shapes of the figures indicate different ages.
ca. 1319-1204 B.C.E.
late Dynasty 18 to early Dynasty 19
11 7/16 x 16 1/4 x 2 13/16 in. (29 x 41.2 x 7.2 cm) (show scale)
Charles Edwin Wilbour Fund
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Relief of Mourning Women, ca. 1319-1204 B.C.E. Limestone, 11 7/16 x 16 1/4 x 2 13/16 in. (29 x 41.2 x 7.2 cm). Brooklyn Museum, Charles Edwin Wilbour Fund, 37.31E. Creative Commons-BY (Photo: Brooklyn Museum, 37.31E_PS9.jpg)
overall, 37.31E_PS9.jpg. Brooklyn Museum photograph, 2014
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