Seated ka-statue of King Djoser

By Jacqueline Engel

This is the oldest known life-size Egyptian statue and represents King Djoser.

It was found in 1925 in a sealed chamber, known as the serdab (cellar in Arabic), attached to the northern face of the Step Pyramid, near his cult temple within his funerary complex.

As typical of this period, the hole in the serdab allowed the king’s soul (ka) residing in the statue to peer out, receive the offerings, and follow the rituals performed for him.

In addition, in this case, the gaze of the king was turned towards the northern sky, thus pairing him with the Imperishable Stars that never set below the horizon.

Currently a plaster copy has been placed in the serdab where this statue was found.

3rd Dynasty King Netjerikhet Djoser), about 2649-2630 BC.

Saqqara (pyramid complex of Djoser, sendab courtyard),

limestone, pigment, JE 49158

Egyptian Museum Caïro

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