Height: 75.000 cm
Width: 48.000 cm
Ancient Egypt and Sudan
Stela of the chief craftsman Qeh
From Deir el-Medina, Thebes,
19th Dynasty, reign of Ramesses II, around 1250 BC
Foreign deities in Egyptian forms
Several gods and goddesses were imported from Syria-Palestine from the late Middle Kingdom (around 1800 BC) onwards. The appearance of these deities coincided with Egyptian exploration and conquest of parts of western Asia, which is perhaps why most of them were associated with warfare. The deities were identified by symbols, usually weapons, showing their foreign origin.
Min and Reshef were associated in a triad with the goddess Qedeshet. In characteristic form, Qedeshet is shown naked, standing on a lion and holding flowers and snakes. Her full frontal pose is similar to that of Harpokrates (Horus the child) on cippi stelae. The inclusion of the Egyptian god Min in this triad may be due to his association with the Eastern Desert. This stela may have originally stood outside Qeh's tomb at Deir el-Medina (number 360) or in a local temple.
S. Quirke, Ancient Egyptian religion (London, The British Museum Press, 1992)
I. Cornelius, The iconography of the Canaani (Fribourg, University Press Gottingen Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht, 1994)
T.G.H. James (ed.), Hieroglyphic texts from Egyp-2, Part 9 (London, The British Museum Press, 1970)
I. Shaw and P. Nicholson (eds.), British Museum dictionary of A (London, The British Museum Press, 1995)