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Harpist and Singer

Egyptian, Classical, Ancient Near Eastern Art

On View: 19th Dynasty to Roman Period, Martha A. and Robert S. Rubin Gallery, 3rd Floor

Scenes of daily life, many of which may actually have had religious significance, were a basic element of private-tomb decoration until the first part of Dynasty XVIII. Their renewed popularity in tombs of Dynasties XXV and XXVI reflects that era's penchant for the past. It is uncertain whether the unusual frontal depiction of the scribe shown here is an archaism or an innovation of the relief's own time.

CULTURE Egyptian
MEDIUM Limestone, pigment
  • Possible Place Collected: Thebes (El-Assasif), Egypt
  • DATES ca. 670–650 B.C.E.
    DYNASTY late Dynasty 25 to early Dynasty 26
    PERIOD Late Third Intermediate Period to early Late Period
    DIMENSIONS 5 5/8 x 7 1/2 in. (14.3 x 19.1 cm)  (show scale)
    CREDIT LINE Charles Edwin Wilbour Fund
    CATALOGUE DESCRIPTION Fragment of limestone relief. At left, in raised relief, incomplete seated man playing harp. At right, seated singer, right leg raised, right hand extended, left hand at ear. Above singer in raised relief, ‘singer’; portion of same inscription at right. Relief is fragment from a register of musicians. Condition: Poor. Very heavily saturated with salt. Slight restoration at upper right edge and on right elbow. Scattered remains of red paint on body of harper.
    CAPTION Egyptian. Harpist and Singer, ca. 670–650 B.C.E. Limestone, pigment, 5 5/8 x 7 1/2 in. (14.3 x 19.1 cm). Brooklyn Museum, Charles Edwin Wilbour Fund, 49.17. Creative Commons-BY (Photo: Brooklyn Museum, 49.17.jpg)
    IMAGE overall, 49.17.jpg. Brooklyn Museum photograph
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    RIGHTS STATEMENT Creative Commons-BY
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