Art/ Collection/ Art Object

Colossal Seated Statue of Amenhotep III, Reinscribed by Merneptah

New Kingdom
Dynasty 18
reign of Amenhotep III
ca. 1390–1353 B.C.
From Egypt, Upper Egypt, Thebes, Luxor (el-Uqsur), Luxor Temple, Eastern Portal
Porphyritic diorite
H. 228 cm (89 3/4 in) W. of base 58.4 cm (23 in); d. 123.2 cm (48 1/2 in) Weight 2766.9 kg (6100 lbs)
Credit Line:
Rogers Fund and Edward S. Harkness Gift, by exchange, 1922
Accession Number:
On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 131
This colossus of Amenhotep III, whose distinctive facial features are still recognizable despite their damaged state, once adorned the temple he built to Amen-Re in Luxor (ancient Thebes). Like so many Dynasty 18 monuments, this statue, along with its partner (22.5.1), was usurped a century and a half later by Merneptah, who had it moved from its original location to the eastern portal of the temple. Merneptah's deeply incised titulary contrasts with the restrained carving of the sema tawy ("Unification of the Two Lands") motif on both sides of the throne of the other, larger colossus. While the broad, flat planes and bold proportions are typical of Egyptian architectural statuary, these two pieces are distinguished by the quality of their sculptural details, such as the rendering of the faces and the elements of the costumes.
Received in 1922 from the Egyptian Government in exchange for antiquities from the Museums share of finds made during the 1920-22 Excavations.

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