Head of Amenhotep III Wearing the Round Wig

Although he must have been nearly 50 years old when this portrait was carved, King Amenhotep III appears more youthful than ever. Over a round, curly wig he wears a diadem with side streamers adorned with cobras bearing sun disks on their heads.

The stone quartzite was associated with the sun on account of its ruddy hues, ranging in color from brown to red to purple. It was a favorite of Amenhotep III, the king who called himself the “dazzling sun-disk of all lands.”

Head of Amenhotep III Wearing the Round Wig
Head of Amenhotep III Wearing the Round Wig

New Kingdom, 18th Dynasty, reign of Amenhotep III, ca. 1391-1353 BC. Brown quartzite Overall: 17.3 x 17 x 25.3 cm (6 13/16 x 6 11/16 x 9 15/16 in.) Now in the Cleveland Museum of Art. 1961.417