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Ax Blade

Egyptian, Classical, Ancient Near Eastern Art

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

The decoration of this ax blade consists of a graceful ibex lowering Its head to eat. Executed in an openwork technique, the blade would have broken if used to deliver a blow. In all probability, it functioned in a funerary or cultic ceremony in which its use was purely symbolic.

  • Reportedly From: eastern Delta, Egypt
  • DATES ca. 1336–1295 B.C.E.
    DYNASTY late Dynasty 18
    PERIOD New Kingdom
    DIMENSIONS 3 3/8 × 1/8 × 2 5/8 in. (8.6 × 0.3 × 6.7 cm)  (show scale)
    CREDIT LINE Charles Edwin Wilbour Fund
    PROVENANCE Archaeological provenance not documented, reportedly from the Eastern Delta, Egypt; by 1966, acquired by Joseph Khawam & Co., Paris, France; 1966, purchased from Joseph Khawam & Co. by the Brooklyn Museum.
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    CATALOGUE DESCRIPTION Openwork bronze ceremonial axe blade with figure of ibex, bearded, male, thin tail, which has both forelegs and the left hind leg advanced. Condition: Surface reddish in color, rough and pitted and in two places still showing green corrosion, namely on the tail on the left side and at the upper edge forward inner corner.
    CAPTION Ax Blade, ca. 1336–1295 B.C.E. Bronze, 3 3/8 × 1/8 × 2 5/8 in. (8.6 × 0.3 × 6.7 cm). Brooklyn Museum, Charles Edwin Wilbour Fund, 66.171.1. Creative Commons-BY (Photo: Brooklyn Museum, CUR.66.171.1_wwg8.jpg)
    IMAGE installation, West Wing gallery 8 installation, CUR.66.171.1_wwg8.jpg. Brooklyn Museum photograph, 2006
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    RIGHTS STATEMENT Creative Commons-BY
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