Statue of the Egypto-Persian Ptahhotep

Illustration

by
published on 08 November 2017

This statue of Ptahhotep (who was the Overseer of the Treasury) is shown in a Persian costume that Egyptian officials adopted when Egypt was under Persian control. The jacket with flaring sleeves, over which a skirt is wrapped, is complemented by a Persian bracelet and torque (a bar-like necklace) as well as by an Egyptian pectoral, or chest plaque. These accessories give Ptahhotep the overall appearance of an Egypto-Persian official, one whose dress speaks clearly of his loyalty to the Persian king and the Persian court. The rendering of the two ibexes that terminate the torque, however, is typically Egyptian, with the heads shown from the side. This treatment, together with the pectoral showing Ptah and the lion-headed goddess Sekhmet, underscores the essentially Egyptian nature of the statue. The statue dates from the late period of Early Dynasty XXVII, which corresponds to the First Persian Period (c. 525-404 BCE). The statue is probably from Memphis, Egypt and was made from graywacke. (Brooklyn Museum, New York)



About the Author

James Blake Wiener
James is a writer and former Professor of History. He holds an MA in World History with a particular interest in cross-cultural exchange and world history. He is a co-founder of Ancient History Encyclopedia and its Communications Director.

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