Skip Navigation

Statue of Metjetji

Egyptian, Classical, Ancient Near Eastern Art

On View: Old Kingdom to 18th Dynasty, Egyptian Galleries, 3rd Floor
Metjetji, the subject of this statue, is also depicted in the two wooden statues nearby. In this case he is shown in later life, with the long kilt of a senior official and, as viewed from the side, a rather flabby torso. The expensive addition of inlaid stone eyes with copper rims suggests that this was considered the most important of Metjetji’s statues. A large head, big eyes, and very long fingers often appear on statues of this time; here they seem to suggest wisdom and maturity.
MEDIUM Wood, gesso, pigment, alabaster, obsidian, copper alloy
  • Possible Place Collected: Saqqara, Egypt
  • DATES ca. 2371–2288 B.C.E.
    DYNASTY late Dynasty 5 to early Dynasty 6
    PERIOD Old Kingdom
    DIMENSIONS 24 3/16 × 8 1/2 × 13 in. (61.4 × 21.6 × 33 cm)  (show scale)
    CREDIT LINE Charles Edwin Wilbour Fund
    PROVENANCE Tomb of Metjetji, southwest of the Djoser enclosure, Saqqara, Egypt; before 1951, provenance not yet documented; by 1951, acquired by Nellie Notrica of New York, NY; 1951, purchased from Nellie Notrica by the Brooklyn Museum.
    Provenance FAQ
    CATALOGUE DESCRIPTION Standing wooden statue of Mtty (Methethy). Conventional pose, left leg advanced, left arm pendant at side, right hand clutches fold of long pleated skirt with thumb on inner side of fold. Hair (no headdress) indicated by black paint. Eyes inlaid in obsidian and alabaster outlined in copper. Only clothing is long gesso skirt with flaring triangular front, horizontally pleated. Rectangular base with incised inscription in two lines across front of top surface. Condition: Most of gesso lost from kilt. Some cracks in wood, especially on left side of face and hands. Body was painted light red, hair black. Feet considerably decayed.
    MUSEUM LOCATION This item is on view in Old Kingdom to 18th Dynasty, Egyptian Galleries, 3rd Floor
    CAPTION Statue of Metjetji, ca. 2371–2288 B.C.E. Wood, gesso, pigment, alabaster, obsidian, copper alloy, 24 3/16 × 8 1/2 × 13 in. (61.4 × 21.6 × 33 cm). Brooklyn Museum, Charles Edwin Wilbour Fund, 51.1. Creative Commons-BY (Photo: Brooklyn Museum, 51.1_view1_SL1.jpg)
    IMAGE overall, 51.1_view1_SL1.jpg. Brooklyn Museum photograph
    "CUR" at the beginning of an image file name means that the image was created by a curatorial staff member. These study images may be digital point-and-shoot photographs, when we don\'t yet have high-quality studio photography, or they may be scans of older negatives, slides, or photographic prints, providing historical documentation of the object.
    RIGHTS STATEMENT Creative Commons-BY
    You may download and use Brooklyn Museum images of this three-dimensional work in accordance with a Creative Commons license. Fair use, as understood under the United States Copyright Act, may also apply. Please include caption information from this page and credit the Brooklyn Museum. If you need a high resolution file, please fill out our online application form (charges apply). For further information about copyright, we recommend resources at the United States Library of Congress, Cornell University, Copyright and Cultural Institutions: Guidelines for U.S. Libraries, Archives, and Museums, and Copyright Watch. For more information about the Museum's rights project, including how rights types are assigned, please see our blog posts on copyright. If you have any information regarding this work and rights to it, please contact
    Not every record you will find here is complete. More information is available for some works than for others, and some entries have been updated more recently. Records are frequently reviewed and revised, and we welcome any additional information you might have.