Skip Navigation

Female Figurine

Egyptian, Classical, Ancient Near Eastern Art

On View: Egyptian Orientation Gallery, 3rd Floor
Female figurines in terracotta and stone have been excavated from Neolithic Period Nubian graves at sites such as El Kadada, suggesting they functioned in the mortuary ritual and perhaps in the afterlife of the deceased. Abbreviated arms, full hips, and incised and painted markings that could indicate tattooing, body decoration, or clothing are characteristic of these figurines.
MEDIUM Terracotta, pigment
  • Place Made: Egypt
  • DATES ca. 3500–3100 B.C.E.
    PERIOD Predynastic Period, Naqada II to Naqada III Period
    DIMENSIONS 5 1/2 x 1 7/16 x 1 9/16 in. (14 x 3.7 x 4 cm)  (show scale)
    ACCESSION NUMBER 1996.146.1
    CREDIT LINE Bequest of Mrs. Carl L. Selden in honor of Bernard V. Bothmer
    PROVENANCE Archaeological provenance not documented; by 1977, acquired by Bruce McAlpine of London, United Kingdom; December 1, 1977, purchased from Bruce McAlpine by Carl Louis Selden and Florence Barstock Selden (Mrs. Carl L. Selden); 1977, loaned by Carl Louis Selden and Florence Barstock Selden to the Brooklyn Museum; 1996, bequest of Florence Barstock Selden to the Brooklyn Museum.
    Provenance FAQ
    MUSEUM LOCATION This item is on view in Egyptian Orientation Gallery, 3rd Floor
    CAPTION Nubian. Female Figurine, ca. 3500–3100 B.C.E. Terracotta, pigment, 5 1/2 x 1 7/16 x 1 9/16 in. (14 x 3.7 x 4 cm). Brooklyn Museum, Bequest of Mrs. Carl L. Selden in honor of Bernard V. Bothmer, 1996.146.1. Creative Commons-BY (Photo: Brooklyn Museum, 1996.146.1_profile_PS2.jpg)
    IMAGE profile, 1996.146.1_profile_PS2.jpg. Brooklyn Museum photograph, 2008
    "CUR" at the beginning of an image file name means that the image was created by a curatorial staff member. These study images may be digital point-and-shoot photographs, when we don\'t yet have high-quality studio photography, or they may be scans of older negatives, slides, or photographic prints, providing historical documentation of the object.
    RIGHTS STATEMENT Creative Commons-BY
    You may download and use Brooklyn Museum images of this three-dimensional work in accordance with a Creative Commons license. Fair use, as understood under the United States Copyright Act, may also apply. Please include caption information from this page and credit the Brooklyn Museum. If you need a high resolution file, please fill out our online application form (charges apply). For further information about copyright, we recommend resources at the United States Library of Congress, Cornell University, Copyright and Cultural Institutions: Guidelines for U.S. Libraries, Archives, and Museums, and Copyright Watch. For more information about the Museum's rights project, including how rights types are assigned, please see our blog posts on copyright. If you have any information regarding this work and rights to it, please contact
    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.