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Head of a Queen

Egyptian, Classical, Ancient Near Eastern Art

This fragment illustrates the cosmopolitan nature of society in the Ptolemaic Period. Although the full face and small lips are Egyptian stylistic elements, the curly locks and coiled tresses are Hellenistic. The uraeus cobra on the forehead identifies the woman as a queen.

  • Possible Place Made: Egypt
  • DATES 305-30 B.C.E.
    PERIOD Ptolemaic Period
    DIMENSIONS 5 5/16 x 4 5/16 x 4 3/4 in. (13.5 x 11 x 12 cm)  (show scale)
    MUSEUM LOCATION This item is not on view
    CREDIT LINE Charles Edwin Wilbour Fund
    RIGHTS STATEMENT Creative Commons-BY
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    CAPTION Head of a Queen, 305-30 B.C.E. Marble, 5 5/16 x 4 5/16 x 4 3/4 in. (13.5 x 11 x 12 cm). Brooklyn Museum, Charles Edwin Wilbour Fund, 71.12. Creative Commons-BY (Photo: Brooklyn Museum, 71.12_front_PS1.jpg)
    IMAGE front, 71.12_front_PS1.jpg. Brooklyn Museum photograph, 2006
    "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 Marble head of a queen wearing a heavy wig encircled by a fillet from which spring three uraei. The eyes were once inlaid. A back pillar extends up above the top of the head and partially covers the rear top portion of the head. The head is broken off diagonally at the neck. A few scholars have theorized that the triple uraeus identifies her a Cleopatra. Condition: Large chips in top of head and in left rear portion of wig. Smaller chips elsewhere in wig; edges of back pillar chipped; lower left eye-lid chipped; chips in face; two uraei chipped; inlays for eyes now missing.
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