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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. 

Qebehsenuef was one of the Four Sons of Horus. His name means ‘He who refreshes his brother’ and he was said to be under the protection of the goddess Selqet (Serqet). Each of the Four Sons of Horus was guarded by a different goddess. 

The title ‘Father of the God’ indicates that Psametek was a priest. His mother was a priestess musician. 

These items were purchased by Wellcome at Sotheby’s in 1928.

Other canopic jars in the Egypt Centre