Outer coffin of Sepi III

By Jacqueline Engel

Deir el -Bersha, Tomb of Sepi III.
12th Dyn – Egyptian Museum Caïro

This is one of the most magnificent inscribed and painted sarcophagi from the Middle Kingdom.
It is made for the General Sepi of the fifteenth nome of Upper Egypt.

Detail of the inside head panel of the rectangular outer coffin of general Sepi, Spells concerning the mythical roads of Mehen, nine elliptical roads which the deceased had to go through to approach the god Osiris, who is unusually seen facing the viewer. Egypt. Ancient Egyptian. Middle Kingdom,12th Dynasty c 1900BC. Bersha, Khemenu cemetery.
Picture by El Gamelyan

The exterior sides of the wooden sarcophagus are decorated with painted hieroglyphs depicting the names, titles, and offering formula.

Two Udjat eyes are located at the top of the false door that is depicted on the side, to which the mask of the anthropoid coffin is turned.

The interior decoration is entirely painted and contains a series of spells in cursive hieroglyphs taken from the Coffin Texts and from the Book of the Two Ways that contained a map of the underworld.


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