University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology

Family Statue [Object of the Day #122]

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Family Statue
Family Statue 


Dating to the Middle Kingdom, this basalt statuette depicts a family group, with the mother (Sneferu) and father (Hetep-Sekhmet) on the left, and two son (Ankhu and Pepi) on the right. The left arm of each of the three males is placed across the chest, and each of the left hands grasps a bolt of cloth.  In contrast, the arms of the mother, hang straight down along her side.  The close fitting attire of the men envelopes most of their bodies, including their feet. The female figure, however, wears a garment that ends at her ankles, exposing her feet. Organized in two columns of inscriptions on the front of the figures are the titles and names of the individuals, some genealogy, offering prayers, and the names of a few gods. While the origin of the statuette remains unknown, its form suggests that it may have come from the forecourt of a temple, and epithets of the deities suggest a northern location for the building where it might have stood.  The text also informs us that the son, Pepi, who appears on the far right, was the donor of the statuette.

Penn Museum Object #59-23-1
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