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Egyptian Faience Ushabti for Ptah-Em-May, TL'd
Item Details
Description
Ancient Egypt, New Kingdom, late 19th Dynasty, ca. late 13th to early 12th century BCE. A gorgeous mold-formed faience ushabti covered in a layer of soft turquoise-hued glaze accentuated with applied black pigment. The delicate figure stands in mummiform with fused legs and feet, crosses both arms over the chest beneath a minimalist wesekh pectoral collar and holds a pick and hoe painted in black. Displayed on the back are a brick mold behind the right shoulder, a yoke and water pots over the left shoulder, and a seed bag centered on the back. The melancholy visage exhibits almond-shaped eyes with elongated exterior canthi beneath short brows, a protruding nose with black-painted nostrils, and a slender mouth, all beneath a finely striated double or "duplex" wig. While not fully translated, a column of black hieroglyphs as well as 3 transverse lines of hieroglyphs provide the names of Osiris as well as the deceased - Ptah-em-may. Size: 1.63" W x 4.88" H (4.1 cm x 12.4 cm); 5.3" H (13.5 cm) on included custom stand.

Ushabti dolls are figures shaped like adult male or female mummies wearing traditional ancient Egyptian headdresses. The ancient Egyptians believed that after they died, their spirits would have to work in the "Field of Reeds" owned by the god of the underworld, Osiris. As a result, they are frequently depicted with arms crossed, holding picks and hoes, with baskets on their backs. This meant that the task of agricultural labor was required by all members of society, from workers to pharaohs. The wealthier nobility in Egyptian society were able to have ushabti made of faience, though wood was a more economical option for members of lower classes. However, the overall size of this example suggests that this was meant for an individual of importance. During the Pharaonic period, they had become so necessary and elaborate that some tombs contained one worker for every day of the year and thirty-six overseers, each responsible for ten laborers. Workers like these are from that period of enormous proliferation, and are some of our best surviving insights into ancient Egyptian funerary practices.

This piece has been tested using thermoluminescence (TL) analysis and has been found to be ancient and of the period stated.

Provenance: private Boynton Beach, Florida, USA collection; ex-private Virginia, USA collection; ex-private M. Dehab collection, Brussels, Belgium, acquired prior to 1979

All items legal to buy/sell under U.S. Statute covering cultural patrimony Code 2600, CHAPTER 14, and are guaranteed to be as described or your money back.

A Certificate of Authenticity will accompany all winning bids.

PLEASE NOTE: Due to recent increases of shipments being seized by Australian & German customs (even for items with pre-UNESCO provenance), we will no longer ship most antiquities and ancient Chinese art to Australia & Germany. For categories of items that are acceptable to ship to Australia or Germany, please contact us directly or work with your local customs brokerage firm.

Display stands not described as included/custom in the item description are for photography purposes only and will not be included with the item upon shipping.

#170770
Condition
Professional repair to legs around midway point, with resurfacing and overpainting along break lines that are nearly invisible. Professional repair and possible restoration to feet along center and proper right corner. Areas of minor roughness behind head and in other scattered areas. Light abrasions and fading to glaze pigment and hieroglyphs, with minor encrustations within some recessed areas, and light pitting commensurate with material type. Great preservation to most hieroglyphs, and nice remains of glaze pigment. TL drill holes beneath feet and behind left shoulder.
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Egyptian Faience Ushabti for Ptah-Em-May, TL'd

Estimate $4,500 - $6,750
1d
13h
3m
27s
$2,250Starting Bid
Starting Price $2,250
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$2,250
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Artemis Gallery

Artemis Gallery

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Louisville, CO, United States
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Antiquities | Ethnographica | Fine Art

May 19, 2022 10:00 AM EDT|
Louisville, CO, USA
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0006: Egyptian Faience Ushabti for Ptah-Em-May, TL'd

Current Bid: $2,250
0 Bids
Est. $4,500 - $6,750Starting Price $2,250
Antiquities | Ethnographica | Fine Art
May 19, 2022 10:00 AM EDT
Buyer's Premium 26.5%

Lot 0006 Details

Description
...
Ancient Egypt, New Kingdom, late 19th Dynasty, ca. late 13th to early 12th century BCE. A gorgeous mold-formed faience ushabti covered in a layer of soft turquoise-hued glaze accentuated with applied black pigment. The delicate figure stands in mummiform with fused legs and feet, crosses both arms over the chest beneath a minimalist wesekh pectoral collar and holds a pick and hoe painted in black. Displayed on the back are a brick mold behind the right shoulder, a yoke and water pots over the left shoulder, and a seed bag centered on the back. The melancholy visage exhibits almond-shaped eyes with elongated exterior canthi beneath short brows, a protruding nose with black-painted nostrils, and a slender mouth, all beneath a finely striated double or "duplex" wig. While not fully translated, a column of black hieroglyphs as well as 3 transverse lines of hieroglyphs provide the names of Osiris as well as the deceased - Ptah-em-may. Size: 1.63" W x 4.88" H (4.1 cm x 12.4 cm); 5.3" H (13.5 cm) on included custom stand.

Ushabti dolls are figures shaped like adult male or female mummies wearing traditional ancient Egyptian headdresses. The ancient Egyptians believed that after they died, their spirits would have to work in the "Field of Reeds" owned by the god of the underworld, Osiris. As a result, they are frequently depicted with arms crossed, holding picks and hoes, with baskets on their backs. This meant that the task of agricultural labor was required by all members of society, from workers to pharaohs. The wealthier nobility in Egyptian society were able to have ushabti made of faience, though wood was a more economical option for members of lower classes. However, the overall size of this example suggests that this was meant for an individual of importance. During the Pharaonic period, they had become so necessary and elaborate that some tombs contained one worker for every day of the year and thirty-six overseers, each responsible for ten laborers. Workers like these are from that period of enormous proliferation, and are some of our best surviving insights into ancient Egyptian funerary practices.

This piece has been tested using thermoluminescence (TL) analysis and has been found to be ancient and of the period stated.

Provenance: private Boynton Beach, Florida, USA collection; ex-private Virginia, USA collection; ex-private M. Dehab collection, Brussels, Belgium, acquired prior to 1979

All items legal to buy/sell under U.S. Statute covering cultural patrimony Code 2600, CHAPTER 14, and are guaranteed to be as described or your money back.

A Certificate of Authenticity will accompany all winning bids.

PLEASE NOTE: Due to recent increases of shipments being seized by Australian & German customs (even for items with pre-UNESCO provenance), we will no longer ship most antiquities and ancient Chinese art to Australia & Germany. For categories of items that are acceptable to ship to Australia or Germany, please contact us directly or work with your local customs brokerage firm.

Display stands not described as included/custom in the item description are for photography purposes only and will not be included with the item upon shipping.

#170770
Condition
...
Professional repair to legs around midway point, with resurfacing and overpainting along break lines that are nearly invisible. Professional repair and possible restoration to feet along center and proper right corner. Areas of minor roughness behind head and in other scattered areas. Light abrasions and fading to glaze pigment and hieroglyphs, with minor encrustations within some recessed areas, and light pitting commensurate with material type. Great preservation to most hieroglyphs, and nice remains of glaze pigment. TL drill holes beneath feet and behind left shoulder.

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