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Stela of a Priest of Amun Named An

A low-ranking priest named An dedicated this modest stela to both the goddess Hathor, "Chief One of Thebes," and to the Eleventh Dynasty king Montuhotep II (circa 2008–1957 B.C.). Hathor appears as a cow, representing her nurturing aspect. An, who is not represented, may have bought the stela ready-made and simply had his name added to it. He probably placed it in a shrine at Deir el Bahri, where both Hathor and Montuhotep II were venerated.

Catalogue Description:
Round topped limestone votive stela set up by the priest of Amon, An. The front of the stela is surmounted by the customary winged sun disk below which are two short columns of hieroglyphs dedicating the stela to King Neb-hpt-R' (Menthuhotep III) founder of the Middle Kingdom. At the base is one row of hieroglyphs stating that he piece was set up by the Priest of Amon, An. The major portion of the surface is occupied by the standing figure of King Neb-hpt-R' making offerings to a large image of the goddess Hathor in the form of a cow standing on a large oblong plinth. Condition: The piece has suffered considerably- The sun disk etc., are almost totally obliterated and the head and upper part of the king's body are likewise almost totally missing. The edges are very badly broken; a small patch under the cow seems to be an ancient repair filling in a natural defect in the stone. There are some traces of blue pigment in the hieroglyphs and very slight traces of red on the king's body and on the feathers of the sun disk.

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