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W498 

W498Canopic Jar head and base

These items date to the very last period during which canopic jars were used, the 26th Dynasty. 

It is likely that the head and base did not originally belong together. The inscription, which is in two columns on the jar, reads ‘Utterance of Selqet, protection for him who is in me, Qebehsenuef. The Father of the God, Psametek, son of Weben-ah, adorer of the God, Chantress (?)’. Since the head of the jar shows Imsety, not Qebehsenuef, the wrong two pieces may have been put together, perhaps to sell to a collector. 

 

These two items, the head and base of a travertine jar, date to the later period of canopic jar use, the Twenty-sixth Dynasty (664–525 bc). They were purchased by Henry Wellcome at Sotheby’s on 13 November 1928 (lot 221), from the collection of Charles James Tabor.25

Together they measure 46.1cm in height. The inscription, which is in two columns on the base, reads ‘Utterance of Selqet, protection for him who is in me, Qebehsenuef. The Father of the God, Psametek, son of Weben-ah, adorer of the God, Chantress (?).’ Qebehsenuef’s name means ‘He who refreshes his brother’ and he was protected by the goddess Selqet. Each of the Four Sons was protected by a different goddess. The title ‘Father of the God’ indicates that Psametek was a priest. His mother was a priestess musician, a Chantress. Since the head of the jar shows Imsety, not Qebehsenuef, it seems the wrong two pieces may have been incorrectly assembled in ancient Egypt.

 

 

Other canopic jars in the Egypt Centre

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