• Christies auction house James Christie logo

    Sale 12239

    Antiquities

    6 July 2016, London, King Street

  • Lot 2

    AN EGYPTIAN ALABASTER JAR INSCRIBED FOR KING DEN

    EARLY DYNASTIC PERIOD, 1ST DYNASTY, CIRCA 3000-2750 B.C.

    Price Realised  

    Estimate

    AN EGYPTIAN ALABASTER JAR INSCRIBED FOR KING DEN
    EARLY DYNASTIC PERIOD, 1ST DYNASTY, CIRCA 3000-2750 B.C.
    The short cylindrical body with rounded rim, a collar just below, incised with a hieroglyphic inscription reading 'the One of the Two Deserts', the throne name of the King Den
    4 ¾ in. (12 cm.) high


    Contact Client Service
    • info@christies.com

    • New York +1 212 636 2000

    • London +44 (0)20 7839 9060

    • Hong Kong +852 2760 1766

    • Shanghai +86 21 6355 1766

    Contact the department

    PUBLISHED:
    P. Kaplony, 'Bemerkungen zu einigen Steingefäßen mit archaïschen Königsnamen', MDAI, vol. 20, 1965, p. 13, no. 21.
    W. Hornbostel, Kunst der Antike - Schätze aus norddeutschem Privatbesitz, Museum für Kunst und Gewerbe, Hamburg, Mainz, 1977, cat. no. 2.

    Historical records regarding King Den are stronger than for any other monarchs of this period. Many labels and inscriptions citing events from his reign have been found, including on stone vases like the present lot. He is credited with a reign of 20 years, having began as co-regent with his mother, the Queen Merithneith. He established many traditions of court rituals and imagery which later defined pharaonic rulers; for example, he was the first to use the Double crown and to be called King of Lower and Upper Egypt, and to be represented smiting the enemies of Egypt.

    Provenance

    Private collection, Hamburg, acquired prior to 1977; and thence by descent to the present owner.


    Exhibited

    Hamburg, Museum für Kunst und Gewerbe, Kunst der Antike: Schätze aus norddeutschem Privatbesitz, 21 January-6 March 1977.