Relief of Akhenaten Offering Incense to the Aten

20521965-2015_033_001_Lpa_ARC.tif

Title

Relief of Akhenaten Offering Incense to the Aten

Date

1353-1336 BC

Context

New Kingdom, Dynasty 18, Reign of Akhenaten
Egypt, Tell el-Amarna, Kom el-Nana
Egyptian

Medium/Dimensions

Limestone
Maximum: 8 5/16 x 8 7/8 in. (21.2 x 22.5 cm)

Object Number

2015.033.001

Description

This relief of Akhenaten is one of a handful of fragments that came from a building at Tell el-Amarna named "Strong of the Living Aten". Carved in sunk relief, Akhenaten offers incense in a censer with a falcon-headed terminal. He wears the Blue Crown with ribbons that flutter outwards from the back. Rays from the solar god Aten pass behind his crown, and one holds an ankh sign, the hieroglyphic sign for life. Akhenaten's pendulous chin, thick lips, slanted eyes, and spindly neck probably do not reflect reality. Instead, his features symbolize his uniqueness as the son and chief priest of the Aten. The style of relief indicates the block was carved late in the Akhenaten's reign.|

Above the king are the remains of hieroglyphs which refer to a recently discovered solar shrine complex named the "Strong of the [Living] Aten" at the site of Kom el-Nana, south of the main city of Tell el-Amarna. Evidence points to the shrine's function as a place where Akhenaten provided incense and libation offerings for the spirits of the dead. The Sunshade Temple of Re (dedicated to Nefertiti) was also part of this complex, which associated the queen's rebirth with the continuity of the cosmos.

Credit Line

Gift of the Morgens West Foundation in honor of Peter Lacovara

Exhibits/Publications

MCCM Permanent Collection Galleries, April 11, 2016 - Present

Rights

© Michael C. Carlos Museum, Emory University. Photo by Bruce M. White, 2016.
This image is provided by the Michael C. Carlos Museum of Emory University, who retains all rights in it. This image is made available for limited non-commercial, educational, and personal use only, or for fair use as defined by United States law. For all other uses, please contact the Michael C. Carlos Museum Office of Collections Services at +1(404) 727-4282 or mccm.collections.services@emory.edu. Users must cite the author and source of the image as they would material from any printed work, but not in any way that implies endorsement of the user or the user's use of the image. Users may not remove any copyright, trademark, or other proprietary notices, including without limitation attribution information, credits, and copyright notices that have been placed on or near the image by the Museum. The Museum assumes no responsibility for royalties or fees claimed by the artist or third parties. The User agrees to indemnify and hold harmless Emory University, its Michael C. Carlos Museum, its agents, employees, faculty members, students and trustees from and against any and all claims, losses, actions, damages, expenses, and all other liabilities, including but not limited to attorney’s fees, directly or indirectly arising out of or resulting from its use of photographic images for which permission is granted hereunder.

On View

Yes

Citation

“Relief of Akhenaten Offering Incense to the Aten,” Michael C. Carlos Museum Collections Online, accessed November 18, 2017, http://carlos.digitalscholarship.emory.edu/items/show/6567.

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