< Back to collection

Head of Wesirwer, Priest of Montu

The fragmentary inscription on the dorsal pillar of this head contains a rebus that reveals the owner's name—Wesirwer ("Osiris Is Great")—and part of his title. An inscription on a statue in the Egyptian Museum in Cairo to which the head was originally attached (see photo) reveals that Wesirwer was a priest of the Theban god Montu. On the Cairo statue, Wesirwer holds figures of the Theban divine triad—Amun, king of the gods; Mut, his consort; and Khonsu, their child, a god of the moon. He sports an Achaemenid-, or Persian-, style garment, which had been introduced before Dynasty XXVII (circa 525–404 B.C.), a period of foreign occupation.

The Brooklyn fragment belongs to a group of green-stone heads that combine both conventional and naturalistic facial details. Wesirwer's egg-shaped skull and almond eyes are standard elements of fourth-century works, but the serene gaze is a naturalizing element perhaps evocative of Wesirwer's piety.

Catalogue Description:
Green basalt male head preserved to spring of shoulders, shaved skull, eyebrows not represented. Neck-line of garment incised. Back-pillar with pyramidal top bearing relief of seated Osiris; below relief, incised inscription preserving only names of Amen-re and Montu.

Brooklyn Museum Logo