Period: New Kingdom
Dynasty: Dynasty 18
Reign: reign of Thutmose IV
Date: ca. 1400–1390 B.C.
Geography: From Egypt, Upper Egypt, Thebes, Valley of the Kings, Tomb of Thutmose IV (KV 43), Carter/Davis 1903
Medium: Wood (ficus sycomorus?)
Dimensions: H. 25.1 cm (9 7/8 in)
Credit Line: Theodore M. Davis Collection, Bequest of Theodore M. Davis, 1915
Accession Number: 30.8.45a–c
In 1903 Theodore M. Davis discovered a tomb in the Valley of the Kings that belonged to Tuthmose IV, whose throne name was Menkheperure. The fragmentary remains of the king's funerary equipment included this arm panel from a throne. A second arm panel from the same throne is now in the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston. The scenes on the panels suggest that the throne was used either for the king's coronation, or possibly for his thirty-year jubilee, the Sed festival, or Heb-Sed.
The panel in the Metropolitan Museum is from the left arm of the throne. Traces of glue on the surface suggest that the beautifully carved low relief, with its exquisitely executed details, was once covered with gold foil. On one side, the king is shown as a sphinx subduing the enemies of Egypt. The front edge of the panel is missing, but the text before the king's face probably read: "Lord of the Two Lands, Menkheperure, son of Re, Tuthmose, [given] life like Re." The falcon at the upper right represents the god Horus who is identified as "the Behedite, the great god, with dappled plumage, giving life and dominion." The text above the sphinx's back reads: "Horus, the lord of might and action, trampling all foreign lands."
On the other side, the panel depicts the enthroned Thutmose, described as "the young god, Menkheperure," wearing the red crown of Lower Egypt. In front of him is the lion-headed goddess Weret, whose name is written above her head. Behind the king is the ibis-headed god Thoth "Lord of Hermopolis, giving all life and dominion." Thoth says, "I have brought you millions of years of life and dominion united with eternity." Behind the throne is the phrase "All life and dominion around him [like] Re."