Copper alloy votive box, also known as relic-box or animal coffin; case surmounted by a snake figure.
- Production date
- 500 BC - 300 BC (late 5th - early 4th century?)
- Curator's comments
Recorded as missing.
More than a hundred votive boxes were discovered in Naukratis. The bulk of them were discovered in a building located in the southern part of the city (Petrie 1886, 41-42). This missing specimen could have originated from this cache that can be dated around the end of the 5th-beginning of the 4th century BC (Masson 2015). However, Griffith signalled in his notes from January 1885 several bronze reptile cases in a trench located outside the Great Temenos (Masson forthcoming b).
Most of Naukratis votive boxes displayed a figure of a reptile, lizard or snake such as this one. Reptiles are particularly associated with the solar god and demiurge Atum (for the snake relic-box: Weiss 2012, 276-278). Snake votive boxes pertain particularly to the types T 13 and T 14 in the typology of animal bronzes by K. Weiss (Weiss 2012, 725-731, Pl. 42c-e, 75a/g, 77l, Typ T 13 and T 14, esp. Nr. 741-743, 745-746, 750-754, 758-762, 764-767 from Naukratis)
Petrie, W. M. F. 1886, Naukratis. Part I., 1884-5 (Third Memoir of the Egypt Exploration Fund), London, 41-42.
Masson, A. 2015, ‘Cult and Trade. A reflexion on Egyptian metal offerings from Naukratis’, in D. Robinson and F. Goddio (eds), Thonis Heracleion in Context, Oxford Centre for Maritime Archaeology Monograph 8, Oxford, 71-88.
Masson, A. forthcoming b, ‘Naukratis: Egyptian offerings in context’, in M. Bergeron and A. Masson (eds), Naukratis in Context: Cults, Sanctuaries and Offerings, Proceedings of the Second Naukratis Project Workshop, held at the British Museum 22nd – 23rd June 2013.
Weiss, K. 2012, Ägyptische Tier- und Götterbronzen aus Unterägypten : Untersuchungen zu Typus, Ikonographie und Funktion sowie der Bedeutung innerhalb der Kulturkontakte zu Griechenland, Ägypten und Altes Testament 81.
- Not on display
- Additional IDs
Miscellaneous number: 1886.31.69.c (Accession Number)