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Model Vessel Inscribed for Amunhotep II

Egyptian, Classical, Ancient Near Eastern Art

Foundation Deposits

In addition to commissioning new buildings, Egyptian kings occasionally claimed existing structures such as temples or palaces as their own.

The most common way for a king to do this was to substitute his own name for that of the original builder in the inscriptions. When a king commissioned a new structure, he buried objects in the four corners of the foundation to be certain that the gods would remember the true builder and that later kings could not find and reinscribe them. These so-called foundation deposits usually included plaques with the king’s name, as well as models of objects used to erect the building, such as grinders, hoes, and rockers needed to move large stones.
MEDIUM Egyptian alabaster
  • Place Made: Egypt
  • DATES ca. 1426–1400 B.C.E.
    DYNASTY Dynasty 18
    PERIOD New Kingdom
    DIMENSIONS Other (max): 5 5/16 x 3 3/8 in. (13.5 x 8.6 cm) Other (min): 3 1/8 x 1 7/8 in. (7.9 x 4.8 cm)  (show scale)
    CREDIT LINE Charles Edwin Wilbour Fund
    PROVENANCE Archaeological provenance not yet documented, probably excavated by the Egyptian Antiquities Service at the Temple of Amenophis II, near the Great Sphinx, Giza, Egypt; by 1936, acquired by Louis Herse of Alexandria, Egypt; 1936, purchased from Louis Herse by the Brooklyn Museum.
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    MUSEUM LOCATION This item is not on view
    CAPTION Model Vessel Inscribed for Amunhotep II, ca. 1426–1400 B.C.E. Egyptian alabaster, Other (max): 5 5/16 x 3 3/8 in. (13.5 x 8.6 cm). Brooklyn Museum, Charles Edwin Wilbour Fund, 36.620.6. Creative Commons-BY (Photo: Brooklyn Museum, CUR.36.620.6_bw.jpg)
    IMAGE overall, CUR.36.620.6_bw.jpg. Brooklyn Museum photograph
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    RIGHTS STATEMENT Creative Commons-BY
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