Granodiorite statue of Senwosret I

Said to be from Karnak, Egypt
12th Dynasty, around 1950 BC

In the twentieth year of his reign Senwosret's father, Amenemhat I (1985-1955 BC) took his son to share the throne with him. Together they began a co-regency, a form of rule which became characteristic of the dynasty. With historical hindsight it was a wise decision, since it appears that Amenemhat was murdered some ten years later, and Senwosret was ready to take the throne.

Statues of Senwosret I (1965-1920 BC) show a remarkable variation of facial types, from very bland to the more forceful example here. The modelling is very powerful and particular attention seems to have been paid to the carving of the torso and face.

A cartouche on Senwosret's belt is inscribed with the throne name of Kheperkare. For a number of years, this statue was thought to represent a much later king, Nectanebo I (380-362 BC) of the Thirtieth Dynasty, who used the same throne name. The confusion may have been compounded because of the archaising style of sculpture of the Late Period (661-332 BC).

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More information


D. Wildung, Ägypten 2000 v.Chr, München, Hirmer (2000)

E.R. Russmann, Eternal Egypt: masterworks of (University of California Press, 2001)

B. Fay, The Louvre sphinx and royal sc (Mainz, Verlag Philipp von Zabern, 1996)

S. Quirke and A.J. Spencer, The British Museum book of anc (London, The British Museum Press, 1992)


Height: 78.500 cm

Museum number

EA 44


Gift of Colonel R.W. Howard Vyse (1838)


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