Art/ Collection/ Collection/ Art Object

Statue of the Goddess Sakhmet

Period:
New Kingdom
Dynasty:
Dynasty 18
Reign:
reign of Amenhotep III
Date:
ca. 1390–1352 B.C.
Geography:
From Egypt, Upper Egypt, Thebes, Karnak
Medium:
Granodiorite
Dimensions:
H. 213 cm (83 7/8 in); w. of base 49.5 cm (19 1/2 in); d. 97.5 cm (38 3/8 in)
Credit Line:
Gift of Henry Walters, 1915
Accession Number:
15.8.3
On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 135
This statue depicts Sakhmet, the goddess who represented the force of violence and unexpected disaster. Her potential for danger is symbolized by the lion's head with which she is depicted and by the sun disk she wears. Egyptian physicians saw the treatment of illness in part as appeasement of Sakhmet, and for that reason they were usually priests of the goddess. In withholding her power, Sakhmet bestowed life, symbolized by the ankh sign she holds in her left hand.
Taken to England in the early 1800s by Belzoni and D'Athanasi who were working for Henry Salt; exhibited in the recesses of Waterloo Bridge, 1833; Collection of John Lee of Hartwell House; Collection of Lord Amherst; purchased by the Museum from Lord Amherst, 1915.

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