Axe with Kha monogram

This bronze Axe with the monogram of Kha is incised on the upper face of the blade. Some of the tools found in Kha’s funerary assemblage belong to the world of carpentry.

An axe stands out among them. It has a wooden handle and a bronze blade, engraved with Kha’s monogram, attached by an elaborate weave of leather bands.

Axe with Kha’s monogram incised on the upper face of the blade
Axe with Kha’s monogram incised on the upper face of the blade

The position of the blade, at a right angle to the handle, makes this a very versatile tool because it fulfills the function of a normal cutting blade as well as that of a planer; its practicality of use is such that, in Kha’s time, Egyptian carpenters and joiners had already been using the model for over a millennium to cut and hew wooden boards, but also to shape and smooth surfaces.

The Theban Tomb of Kha (TT8) is considered to be the best surviving furnished, non royal tomb from ancient Egypt. Kha was architect of the King Amenhotep II of the 18th Dynasty and responsible for building projects not just in the reign of Amenhotep II, but also in the reign of 3 or 4 kings: Thutmose III, Amenhotep II, Thutmose IV and Amenhotep III.

New Kingdom, 18th Dynasty, ca. 1425-1353 BC. Wood, bronze and leather. 24 x 23 x 5.7 cm. From the Tomb of Kha (TT8), Deir el-Medina, West Thebes. Schiaparelli excavations (1903-1906). Now in the Egyptian Museum of Turin. S. 8386