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Egyptian, Classical, Ancient Near Eastern Art

Occasionally we can identify one of the members of the Amarna royal family by a unique characteristic. The woman on this column drum has a tall, flat-topped crown worn exclusively by Nefertiti. This same headdress appears on the famous bust of the queen that is in the Berlin Museum.

MEDIUM Limestone, pigment
  • Possible Place Made: Tell el-Amarna, Egypt
  • DATES ca. 1352–1336 B.C.E.
    DYNASTY late Dynasty 18
    PERIOD New Kingdom, Amarna Period
    DIMENSIONS 9 1/4 × 15 × 1 3/4 in. (23.5 × 38.1 × 4.4 cm)  (show scale)
    CREDIT LINE Charles Edwin Wilbour Fund
    PROVENANCE Presumably from Tell el-Amarna, reused inside the pylon of Ramses II at Hermopolis Magna, Egypt; by 1961, acquired by Khawam family; between 1961 and 1971, provenance not yet documented; by October 1971, acquired by Jean Vinchon, Paris, France; October 19, 1971, purchased from Jean Vinchon by the Brooklyn Museum.
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    CATALOGUE DESCRIPTION Limestone sunk relief which, to judge from the convex curve of the decorated surface, once formed part of a column. To the left is Nefertiti, facing right, wearing the crown peculiar to her and Queen Tiy. She offers a formal bouquet to the Aten, three of whose rays reach to receive it. In front of her stands Akhenaton wearing a Blue Crown with streamers. Only the rear third of his body is preserved. Nefertiti is preserved from the waist up. Inscription: one line above the offering scene: “given life forever eternally”. Above “given life” are the bottom portions of two cartouches. Condition: Lower left corner broken off and replaced. Chips out of Nefertiti's crown, her right arm and elbow, her left hand and wrist, and the base of her neck. Traces of blue paint in hieroglyphs, flowers, and both crowns. Traces of red paint in both bodies, hands of the Aten and the base of the bouquet.
    MUSEUM LOCATION This item is not on view
    CAPTION Nefertiti, ca. 1352–1336 B.C.E. Limestone, pigment, 9 1/4 × 15 × 1 3/4 in. (23.5 × 38.1 × 4.4 cm). Brooklyn Museum, Charles Edwin Wilbour Fund, 71.89. Creative Commons-BY (Photo: Brooklyn Museum, 71.89_SL1.jpg)
    IMAGE overall, 71.89_SL1.jpg. Brooklyn Museum photograph
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    RIGHTS STATEMENT Creative Commons-BY
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