Statue of Metri as a Scribe

The statue depicts Metri, an overseer of the scribes during the 6th Dynasty, sitting in the traditional pose of scribes with his legs crossed. He spreads a roll of papyrus on his lap and holds it with his left hand. In his right hand he holds a pen.

The body of the statue is painted in a reddish brown. Metri has short, natural hair. Around Metri’s neck is a broad, multiple-strand necklace, with patches of the original color surviving ( light blue, green and white). The whites of his eyes are inlaid with opaque quartz and the pupils with rock crystal. His name and titles are written on a wooden pedestal on which the statue rests.

Statue of Metri as a Scribe
Statue depicts Metri, an overseer of the scribes during the 6th Dynasty, sitting in the traditional pose of scribes with his legs crossed.
Statue of Metri as a Scribe
Detail of statue of Metri as a scribe

Seated statues with crossed legs are a widespread type of statues reserved for private individuals. They are found in all contexts (divine and funerary temples, sanctuaries, necropolises) and for individuals belonging to all hierarchical levels.

Metri held many titles, among which were Nome Administrator, Priest of the Goddess Maat, the Greatest of the Tens of Upper Egypt, and the Close Counselor. There was another small standing figure beside him but it is now almost completely broken.

Old Kingdom, 5th Dynasty, ca. 2494-2345 BC. Painted limestone. From Saqqara necropolis. Now in the Egyptian Museum, Cairo. JE 93165 Ground floor, room 32