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Erotic Musicians

Egyptian, Classical, Ancient Near Eastern Art

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

Although it is one of many similar compositions, this statuette has particular interest for the inscribed rectangular item, possibly a papyrus, on top of the man's phallus. The non-hieroglyphic writing is enigmatic, perhaps representing musical notation.

MEDIUM Limestone, painted
  • Place Made: Egypt
  • DATES 305-30 B.C.E.
    PERIOD Ptolemaic Period
    DIMENSIONS 5 13/16 x 8 1/4 in. (14.8 x 21 cm)  (show scale)
    ACCESSION NUMBER 58.34
    CREDIT LINE Charles Edwin Wilbour Fund
    RIGHTS STATEMENT Creative Commons-BY
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    CAPTION Erotic Musicians, 305-30 B.C.E. Limestone, painted, 5 13/16 x 8 1/4 in. (14.8 x 21 cm). Brooklyn Museum, Charles Edwin Wilbour Fund , 58.34. Creative Commons-BY
    IMAGE overall, CUR.58.34_NegL_23_34_print_bw.jpg. Brooklyn Museum photograph, 2013
    "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.
    CATALOGUE DESCRIPTION Erotic group in soft white limestone. Nude man seated, his enlarged phallus extended on ground. Smaller figure of nude woman playing harp seated on far end of phallus. The man holds curious object in front of him – a musical instrument? Some detail outlined in black paint. Condition: Entire surface worn. Numerous chips along base, on man’s legs etc. Assembled with some restorations along center of phallus.
    RECORD COMPLETENESS Best (81%)
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