Kneeling Statue of Kaemked
The statue depicts Urini’s funerary priest, Kaemked kneeling in a position of worship, clasping his hands on his knees, wearing a short kilt, tied with a belt. This is one of many statues found in the tomb of the Treasurer Urini at Saqqara. A copper frame emphasizes his eyes, while his pupils are inlaid with obsidian. Overall, he projects an attitude of peace and calm.
The statue has been well manufactured; for example, note the details of the tassels of the skirt, the setting of the eyes, and the well-designed face; in addition, the hands crossed as a sign of reverence are a new iconographic element.
The small statue was found in the tomb of the prince and treasurer, Urirni, with many other statuettes of domestic servants. Kaemked was the prince’s funerary priest and is shown here offering devotion and homage to his master. The pose of a kneeling man was rare for this period and is an example of the artist’s desire to introduce innovation, resulting in a work of originality and excellent quality.
Old Kingdom, 5th Dynasty, ca. 2494-2345 BC. Limestone lined with stucco and painted. Height 43 cm. Excavation by Auguste Mariette (1860). Tomb of Urirni, Saqqara necropolis. Now in the Egyptian Museum, Cairo. CG 119