AN EGYPTIAN LIMESTONE RELIEF OF PEHENUKA
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AN EGYPTIAN LIMESTONE RELIEF OF PEHENUKA

OLD KINGDOM, DYNASTY V, 2465-2323 B.C.

Details
AN EGYPTIAN LIMESTONE RELIEF OF PEHENUKA
OLD KINGDOM, DYNASTY V, 2465-2323 B.C.
In shallow raised relief, preserving a horizontal register depicting a procession of eight estates personified as women marching to the left, each wearing a tightly-fitted sheath dress with one breast exposed and a striated tripartite wig, the register introduced by two columns of hieroglyphs reading, "Bringing the gifts of his towns and estates which are in Lower and Upper Egypt for the funerary estate," each personified estate perhaps originally holding a basket on her head, captioned left to right: "The funerary chapel of Pehen", holding a goose; "The Foundation of Sankhenef", holding a rekhyt-bird; "The roasted grain of Pehen", holding a package of foodstuffs; "The one who brings the bread of Pehen", holding a bolt of linen cloth; "The one who brings beer of Pehen", holding a lotus and buds; "The work of Pehen", holding a vessel at chest level; "The sycamore fig-tree of Pehen", holding a jar suspended from a cord; and "The spring of Pehen", holding a bundle of stems(?), mounted
55¼ x 13 in. (140.3 x 33 cm.)
Provenance
English private collection, 1970s.
American private collection.
Special notice
VAT rate of 5% is payable on hammer price and at 15% on the buyer's premium Please note that the lots of Iranian origin are subject to U.S. trade restrictions which currently prohibit the import into the United States. Similar restrictions may apply in other countries. This lot will be removed to an off-site warehouse at the close of business on the day of sale - 2 weeks free storage

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Lot Essay

PUBLISHED:
R. Lepsius, Denkmäler aus Ägypten und Äthiopien, III, Part 2, Berlin, 1849-59, pl. 46.
H. K. Jacquet-Gordon, Les noms des domaines funéraires sous l'Ancien Empire Égyptien, Cairo, 1966, p. 366, figs. 142 and 369-370, nos. 29-34.
E. Porter and R. L. B. Moss, J. Málek (ed.), Topographical Bibliography of Ancient Egyptian Hieroglyphic Texts, Reliefs and Paintings, III, Memphis, Part II, Saqqara to Dashur, Oxford, 1978, nos. 491-492.

The relief comes from the Tomb of Pehenuka, here abbreviated to Pehen, from Saqqara. He served as Chief Justice and Vizir in late Dynasty V or slightly thereafter. The tomb was initially recorded by R. Lepsius in the 19th Century and its estates were studied H. K. Jacquet-Gordon in 1962.
The estates, personified as striding women, were dedicated to providing sustenance in perpetuity for Pehen's funerary chapel. The repetition of these similar images creates and emphasizes the feeling of movement from one room to another.

See illustrations opposite and on previous page.

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