By Jacqueline Engel

36 x 63 x 240 cm – Wood; polychromy
Late Period; 26th Dynasty c. 650 BC
RMO Leiden Holland

The mummy box of Peftjaoeneith is one of the most beautiful in the collection of the National Museum of Antiquities.

The box is made of unusually thick and heavy wood and is beautifully painted in many colors.

In wood-poor Egypt, this coffin will have cost a fortune.

But Peftjaoeneith was also someone with an important function: inspector of the temple domains.

The lid shows various gods figures and texts from the death book.

On the inside of the lid is the sky goddess Noet, with a black body strewn with stars. On the side are pictures of the twelve hours of day and night.

Many images and signs on mummy boxes refer to the resurrection after death.

For example, Peftjaoeneith is depicted with a green face, the color that symbolizes plant growth and new life. The wig and the beard also refer to the fact that the deceased, like the god Osiris, has already conquered death.

Around the shoulders of the coffin is a beautiful flower collar, with many well-kept details.

An important element in these types of collars on mummy boxes is the lotus flower, also a sign of resurrection.



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