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Creator Nationality: African; North African; Egyptian
Creator Name-CRT: Egyptian
Title: Section from the 'Book of the Dead' of Nany
Title Type: Object name
View: Alternate View
Creation Start Date: -104
Creation End Date: -94
Creation Date: ca. 1040-945 B.C.E.
Object Type: Books
Classification Term: Manuscripts
Materials and Techniques: Painted and inscribed papyrus
Dimensions: H. of illustrated section 13 3/4 in. (34.9 cm)
AMICA Contributor: The Metropolitan Museum of Art
Owner Location: New York, New York, USA
ID Number: 30.3.31
Credit Line: Rogers Fund, 1930
Archaeologists found this papyrus in the burial of Nany, a woman in her seventies. She was a chantress (ritual singer) of the god Amun-Re and is referred to as 'king's daughter,' probably meaning she was daughter of the high priest of Amun and titular king, Pinodjem I. As was customary during the Third Intermediate Period, her coffin and boxes of shawabtis were accompanied by a hollow wooden Osiris figure, which contained a papyrus scroll inscribed with a collection of texts from the Book of the Dead, known to the Egyptians as the 'Book of Coming Forth by Day.' It is more than seventeen feet long when unrolled.
The scene depicted here shows the climax of the journey to the afterlife. Nany is in the Hall of Judgment. Holding her mouth and eyes in her hand, she stands to the left of a large scale. Her heart is being weighed against Maat, the goddess of justice and truth, who is represented as a tiny figure wearing her symbol, a single large feather, in her headband. On the right, Osiris, god of the underworld and rebirth, presides over the scene. He wears the white crown of upper Egypt and the curving beard of a god. His body is wrapped like a mummy except for his hands, which clasp a crook. On the table before him is an offering of a joint of beef. Jackal-headed Anubis, overseer of mummification, adjusts the scales, while a baboon-symbolizing Thoth, the god of wisdom and writing-sits on the balance beam and prepares to write down the result. Behind Nany stands the goddess Isis, both wife and sister of Osiris. She is identified by the hieroglyph above her head.
In this scene Nany has been found truthful and therefore worthy of entering the afterlife. Anubis says to Osiris, 'Her heart is an accurate witness,' and Osiris replies, 'Give her her eyes and her mouth, since her heart is an accurate witness.' In the horizontal register above the judgment scene, Nany appears in three episodes: worshiping the divine palette with which all is written, praising a statue of Horus in his falcon form, and standing by her own tomb.
AMICA ID: MMA_.30.3.31
AMICA Library Year: 2000
Media Metadata Rights:
Copyright The Metropolitan Museum of Art
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