Object Image

Stele of Se-ankhy and Ankhu

In this early work, a deceased husband and wife stand before a table stacked high with food, a necessity for continued existence in the hereafter. Prayers for food appear above the scene. The relief stood in Abydos, a sacred site. The hope was that pilgrims passing by the relief (and many others like it) would recite the prayer for food and thereby magically ensure that the spirits of the deceased would have everything-and more-pictured on the table. The goose lying on its back and the bovine leg were, no doubt, a special treat.

Purchase: William Rockhill Nelson Trust...

c.1970-1950 B.C.E.
Limestone
27.0 x 16.5 x 3.5 in
33-16
Image and text: The Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art, 2023

Where you'll find this

Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art
Permanent collection