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Royal Lute Player

Egyptian, Classical, Ancient Near Eastern Art

On View: Amarna Period, Martha A. and Robert S. Rubin Gallery, 3rd Floor

When still intact, the scene from which this relief comes showed one of Akhenaten's daughters playing a lute in a boat floating through reeds in the Nile marshes. The thumb and index finger of the princess's right hand strum the chords, while the long delicate fingers of her left hand press down on the lute strings.

MEDIUM Limestone, pigment
DATES ca. 1352–1336 B.C.E.
DYNASTY late Dynasty 18
PERIOD New Kingdom, Amarna Period
DIMENSIONS 21 x 9 1/4 in. (53.3 x 23.5 cm)  (show scale)
CREDIT LINE Charles Edwin Wilbour Fund
PROVENANCE Tell el-Amarna, Egypt; probably reused inside the pylon of Ramsses II at Hermopolis Magna, Egypt; 1939, excavated inside the pylon of Ramesses II by the German expedition to Hermopolis, Egypt; between 1939 and 1960, provenance not yet documented; 1960, acquired by Michel Abemayor of New York, NY; 1960, purchased from Michel Abemayor by the Brooklyn Museum.
Provenance FAQ
CATALOGUE DESCRIPTION Limestone relief. In raised relief, at left, girl wearing curled wig and facing right playing a lute. At extreme right two small standing figures incompletely preserved. The background almost certainly represents a papyrus swamp, obviously from its irregularity some natural formation. The posts (?) in front of the lutist perhaps being details of boats. The composition possibly a genre scene in a swamp. Condition: Lower right corner broken. Considerable remains of ancient pigment on face. On small figures at right small are of ancient red pigment on upper body.
MUSEUM LOCATION This item is on view in Amarna Period, Martha A. and Robert S. Rubin Gallery, 3rd Floor
CAPTION Royal Lute Player, ca. 1352–1336 B.C.E. Limestone, pigment, 21 x 9 1/4 in. (53.3 x 23.5 cm). Brooklyn Museum, Charles Edwin Wilbour Fund, 60.197.9. Creative Commons-BY (Photo: Brooklyn Museum, 60.197.9_edited_bw.jpg)
IMAGE overall, 60.197.9_edited_bw.jpg. Brooklyn Museum photograph
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