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Statuette of a Seated Cat

Egyptian, Classical, Ancient Near Eastern Art

This figure probably represents Bastet, the goddess most often depicted as a cat. Feline images of her began in Dynasty XXII (circa 945–718 B.C.) and became extremely numerous in the Late Period. Like this figure, many of the finer bronze cats have a scarab on the head, a wadjet-eye on the chest, and pierced ears probably intended for loops of gold.

MEDIUM Bronze
  • Place Made: Africa
  • DATES ca. 664-342 B.C.E.
    DYNASTY XXVI Dynasty-XXX Dynasty
    PERIOD Late Period
    DIMENSIONS 5 1/4 x 1 5/8 x 3 3/4 in. (13.3 x 4.1 x 9.5 cm)  (show scale)
    MUSEUM LOCATION This item is not on view
    ACCESSION NUMBER 78.243
    CREDIT LINE Gift of Mrs. Nasli Heeramaneck
    RIGHTS STATEMENT Creative Commons-BY
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    CAPTION Statuette of a Seated Cat, ca. 664-342 B.C.E. Bronze, 5 1/4 x 1 5/8 x 3 3/4 in. (13.3 x 4.1 x 9.5 cm). Brooklyn Museum, Gift of Mrs. Nasli Heeramaneck, 78.243. Creative Commons-BY (Photo: Brooklyn Museum, CUR.78.243_wwg8.jpg)
    IMAGE installation, West Wing gallery 8 installation, CUR.78.243_wwg8.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 One bronze figurine of a cat. A wadjet eye amulet is incised on the neck and a sacred beetle in raised relief on forehead; both ears pierced; hollow cast. Condition: Gash down right side from face to back, continuing to behind crown of head, belly and rear of front paws incrusted.
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