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Cosmetic Box

Egyptian, Classical, Ancient Near Eastern Art

Personal Arts under Amunhotep III

King Amunhotep III supported artisans and workshops that produced extraordinary personal arts.


The objects included faience, glass, and intricately designed pottery vessels and gold jewelry. Found in both domestic and funerary contexts, these luxury objects were prized by the living and often buried with their owners for use in the afterlife.

The opulence of these objects reflects the splendor and extravagance of the reign of Amunhotep III—the self-styled “Dazzling Sun Disk of All Lands,” who initiated monumental building programs and commissioned vast amounts of sculpture —and anticipates the flamboyant style of Tutankhamun’s time (circa 1332–1322 B.C.E.).

All objects in this case date to the reign of Amunhotep III (circa 1390–1352 B.C.E.) unless otherwise indicated.
MEDIUM Wood (acacia?)
  • Reportedly From: Saqqara, Egypt
  • DATES ca. 1336-1295 B.C.E.
    DYNASTY late Dynasty 18
    PERIOD New Kingdom
    DIMENSIONS 1 9/16 x 3 x 6 3/8 in. (4 x 7.6 x 16.2 cm)
    MUSEUM LOCATION This item is not on view
    ACCESSION NUMBER 37.602E
    CREDIT LINE Charles Edwin Wilbour Fund
    CATALOGUE DESCRIPTION Semi-circular wooden toilet box with sliding lid and mushroom-shaped knob. Decorated with bands of leaves/fruit, and a block border, once inlaid with blue paste. Divided inside; 5 compartments.
    RECORD COMPLETENESS
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