Figure of a Bound Foreign Prisoner
Egyptian, Classical, Ancient Near Eastern Art
On View: Egyptian Orientation Gallery, 3rd Floor
The ancient Egyptians thought of their country as the center of the ordered universe. They saw foreigners as emanations of chaos that had to be controlled or even annihilated. Since the Egyptians believed that images of things might be magically equated with the things themselves, ritually damaging and burying representations of bound foreigners (here a man from Nubia, a neighboring culture) was meant to guarantee dominion over potential enemies and control over external threats to order.
ca. 1979-1801 B.C.E.
XII Dynasty (possibly)
Middle Kingdom (possibly)
4 7/16 x 1 3/4 x 1 3/8 in. (11.3 x 4.5 x 3.5 cm) (show scale)
Charles Edwin Wilbour Fund
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Egyptian. Figure of a Bound Foreign Prisoner, ca. 1979-1801 B.C.E. Limestone, 4 7/16 x 1 3/4 x 1 3/8 in. (11.3 x 4.5 x 3.5 cm). Brooklyn Museum, Charles Edwin Wilbour Fund, 73.23. Creative Commons-BY (Photo: Brooklyn Museum, 73.23_view1_PS9.jpg)
overall, 73.23_view1_PS9.jpg. Brooklyn Museum photograph, 2015
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One figure of a bound Nubian prisoner worked in very soft limestone. Kneeling with arms pulled behind back. Wearing a short wig. An ear plug (?) in right ear worked in the stone, gone from left ear. Features worn. Torse very long. Traces of dark red-brown over all flesh areas most of which remains on back. Traces of black on hair.
Condition: Most paint gone. Surface abrasions and worn areas, nose and mouth very worn.
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