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jar-label

  • Object type

  • Museum number

    EA32650

  • Description

    Part of an ebony oil label: restored from two fragments, with a hole for attachment at the top right-hand corner. The front surface bears an incised inscription, arranged vertically on the left side and in four horizontal registers on the right. These four registers are bordered by a large 'rnpt' hieroglyph, indicating that the text records the events of a particular year. The top register bears a scene of the Sed-festival, showing the king wearing the double crown, running as part of the ritual and seated on a throne in a booth. The meaning of the lower registers is not entirely clear, but they include references to the destruction of a stronghold and the taking of captives.

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  • Culture/period

  • Findspot

  • Materials

  • Technique

  • Dimensions

    • Length: 8 centimetres
    • Width: 5.5 centimetres
  • Inscriptions

      • Inscription Type

        inscription
      • Inscription Script

        hieroglyphic
      • Inscription Position

        front
      • Inscription Translation

        Titles/epithets include : Seal-Bearer of the King of Lower Egypt
      • Inscription Comment

        Incised. The vertical inscriptions give the name of Den and of the seal-bearer of the King of Lower Egypt, Hemaka, together with the name of another official, Iti-sen (P. Kaplony, 'Die Inschriften der Ägyptischen Frühzeit I (Wiesbaden, 1963), 438), who bore the title mḏḥty-nsw (Kaplony reads this title mḏḥ-mḏḥ(w) nsw, see 'Die Inschriften der Ägyptischen Frühzeit I (Wiesbaden, 1963), 300). Beside his name are two signs of uncertain reading (P. Kaplony, 'Die Inschriften der Ägyptischen Frühzeit I (Wiesbaden, 1963), 439; ibid., II, 1004 (note 1607). This official seems to have been associated with the ḥwt-nsw and another building, which may have been an oil-press (P. Kaplony, 'Die Inschriften der Ägyptischen Frühzeit II (Wiesbaden, 1964), 1005-7, n. 1610) . Beneath the king's name is the designation of the kind of oil to which this label referred ( 'Die Inschriften der Ägyptischen Frühzeit I (Wiesbaden, 1963), 313. The name of the oil is sṯỉ- Ḥr), together with its quantity, although part of the number is missing.

        On the right of the label, the inscriptions in the four registers are bordered by a large 'rnpt' hieroglyph, indicating that the text records the events of a particular year. The top register bears a scene of the Sed-festival, showing the king wearing the double crown, running as part of the ritual and seated on a throne in a booth (Vikentiev believed that the scene represented two booths superimposed, with the king wearing the white crown in one and the red crown in the other, 'Annales du Service des Antiquitiés de l'Égypte' 41 (1942), 288-9; 'Annales du Service des Antiquitiés de l'Égypte' 48 (1948), 682-4). The meaning of the lower registers is not entirely clear, but they include references to the destruction of a stronghold and the taking of captives. For discussion, see R. Weill R. Weill, ‘Recherches sur la première dynastie et les temps prépharaoniques' I (Cairo, 1961), 16-37; II, 90-2; J. Vandier, 'Manuel d'Archeologie egyptienne', I, (2), 853-5; Sthe, 'Untersuchungen' III, 66-7; F. Legge, ‘Proceedings of the Society of Biblical Archaeology’ 29 (London, 1907), 101-5.
  • Curator's comments

    The second register is duplicated on a fragment of another label, see W. M. F. Petrie, 'Royal Tombs of the Earliest Dynasties' I, pl. XV, 17. For a very similar label, see E. Amélineau, ‘Les Nouvelles Fouilles d’Abydos’ III, (1897-8), pl. XXXVII, 3; P. E. Newberry, ‘Proceedings of the Society of Biblical Archaeology’ 34 (London, 1912), 282, fig. E.


    Bibliography (selective):
    W. M. F. Petrie, 'Royal Tombs of the Earliest Dynasties' I, pls. XI, 14; XV, 16;
    F. Legge, ‘Proceedings of the Society of Biblical Archaeology’ 29 (London, 1907), pl. opp. p.102, 5;
    F. Legge, ‘Proceedings of the Society of Biblical Archaeology’ 30 (London, 1908), pl. IIb;
    P. E. Newberry, ‘Proceedings of the Society of Biblical Archaeology’ 34 (London, 1912), pl. XXXIII, 14;
    V. Vikentiev, 'Annales du Service des Antiquitiés de l'Égypte' 56 (1959), 21, fig. 7;
    J. Capart, ‘Les Débuts de L’Art, 245, fig. 174;
    J. Capart, ‘Primitive Art', 253, fig. 190;
    J. Vandier, 'Manuel d'Archeologie egyptienne', I, (2), 853, fig. 570;
    W. S. Smith, 'History of Egyptian Sculpture and Painting in the Old Kingdom' (London, 1946), 119, fig. 34.
    See also P. Kaplony, 'Die Inschriften der Ägyptischen Frühzeit I (Wiesbaden, 1963), 297-8;
    P. Kaplony, 'Die Inschriften der Ägyptischen Frühzeit II (Wiesbaden, 1964), 982, n. 1152, Dwn a, 2;
    B. Porter & R. Moss, 'Topographical Bibliography of Ancient Egyptian Hieroglyphic Texts, Reliefs and Paintings' V (Oxford: Clarendon Press), 84.
    A.J. Spencer, 'Early Egypt: The rise of civilisation in the Nile valley' (London, The British Museum Press, 1993), p. 66, 78;
    N. Strudwick, Masterpieces of Ancient Egypt, London 2006, pp. 38-9.

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  • Bibliography

    • Spencer 1980 459 bibliographic details
    • Strudwick 2006 pp.38-39 bibliographic details
  • Location

    G64/10

  • Exhibition history

    Exhibited:

    2011 Jul–Sept, Newcastle, Great North Museum, Pharaoh: King of Egypt
    2012 Oct–Jan, Dorchester, Dorset County Museum, Pharaoh: King of Egypt
    2012 Feb–June, Leeds City Museum, Pharaoh: King of Egypt
    2012 Jul-Oct, Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery, Pharaoh: King of Egypt
    2012 Nov– Feb 2013, Glasgow, Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum, Pharaoh: King of Egypt
    2013 Mar–Aug, Bristol Museum and Art Gallery , Pharaoh: King of Egypt
    [Theme: Festivals & Memory]

  • Condition

    fair (repaired)

  • Conservation

    See treatments 

  • Associated names

  • Associated events

    • Associated Event: Sed festival
  • Acquisition name

  • Acquisition date

    1900

  • Department

    Ancient Egypt & Sudan

  • BM/Big number

    EA32650

  • Registration number

    1900,1015.12

Part of an ebony oil label, restored from two fragments, with a hole for attachment at the top right-hand corner. The front surface bears an incised hieroglyphic inscription, arranged vertically on the left side and in four horizontal registers on the right. The vertical inscriptions give the name of Den and of the seal-bearer of the King of Lower Egypt, Hemaka, together with the name of another official, Iti-sen. Beside his name are two signs of uncertain reading. This
official seems to have been associated with the palace and another building, which may have been an oil-press. Beneath the king’s name is the designation of the kind of oil to which this label referred, together with its quantity, although part of the number is missing. On the right of the label, the inscriptions in the four registers are bordered by a large rnpt-hieroglyph, indicating that the text records the events of a particular year. The top register bears a scene of the Sed-festival, showing the king wearing the double crown, running as part of the ritual and seated on a throne in a booth. The meaning of the lower registers is not entirely clear, but they include references to the destruction of a stronghold and the taking of captives.

Part of an ebony oil label, restored from two fragments, with a hole for attachment at the top right-hand corner. The front surface bears an incised hieroglyphic inscription, arranged vertically on the left side and in four horizontal registers on the right. The vertical inscriptions give the name of Den and of the seal-bearer of the King of Lower Egypt, Hemaka, together with the name of another official, Iti-sen. Beside his name are two signs of uncertain reading. This official seems to have been associated with the palace and another building, which may have been an oil-press. Beneath the king’s name is the designation of the kind of oil to which this label referred, together with its quantity, although part of the number is missing. On the right of the label, the inscriptions in the four registers are bordered by a large rnpt-hieroglyph, indicating that the text records the events of a particular year. The top register bears a scene of the Sed-festival, showing the king wearing the double crown, running as part of the ritual and seated on a throne in a booth. The meaning of the lower registers is not entirely clear, but they include references to the destruction of a stronghold and the taking of captives.

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