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Model of Ceremonial Mace Head

Egyptian, Classical, Ancient Near Eastern Art

On View: Egyptian Orientation Gallery, 3rd Floor
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 Faience
  • Place Excavated: Lisht, Egypt
  • DATES ca. 1938-1759 B.C.E.
    DYNASTY Dynasty 12
    PERIOD Middle Kingdom
    DIMENSIONS 2 1/4 x Diam. 1 15/16 in. (5.7 x 5 cm)  (show scale)
    CREDIT LINE Charles Edwin Wilbour Fund
    CATALOGUE DESCRIPTION Pear-shaped mace head in dark blue faience. Surface decorated in manganese with lotus petals; small circle in manganese at top center. Cylindrical opening for attachment on base. Condition: Intact. Scattered chips on upper body.
    MUSEUM LOCATION This item is on view in Egyptian Orientation Gallery, 3rd Floor
    CAPTION Model of Ceremonial Mace Head, ca. 1938-1759 B.C.E. Faience, 2 1/4 x Diam. 1 15/16 in. (5.7 x 5 cm). Brooklyn Museum, Charles Edwin Wilbour Fund, 59.199.2. Creative Commons-BY (Photo: Brooklyn Museum, CUR.59.199.2_erg456.jpg)
    IMAGE overall, CUR.59.199.2_erg456.jpg. Brooklyn Museum photograph, 9/6/2007
    "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
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