Developed in the beginning of Dynasty 12, the block statue was probably the most significant and long-lasting artistic innovation of its time. The form did not prove immediately popular—only 56 Middle Kingdom examples are known—but in each succeeding period it became more common. Scholars have identified 179 surviving pieces from the New Kingdom (Dynasties 18–20). By the Late Period (Dynasties 26–31), block statues were the most prevalent sculptural type. Nearly one thousand examples are known.