Akhenaten

Figure of Akhenaten Holding an Offering Table

Figure of Akhenaten Holding an Offering Table

This painted sandstone figure of King Akhenaten contains many androgynous physical characteristics which have led to contemporary speculation on Akhenaten’s gender and sexuality, health and religious beliefs. Akhenaten was a progressive king of the 18th Dynasty, who introduced great changes to ancient Egyptian religion and art. This has led to some scholars suggesting that Akhenaten’s...

Egypt's Golden Couple: When Akhenaten and Nefertiti Were Gods on Earth

When Akhenaten and Nefertiti Were Gods

Akhenaten and Nefertiti became gods on earth by transforming Egyptian solar worship, innovating in art and urban design, and merging religion and politics in ways never attempted before. November 2022 marks the centennial of the discovery of the tomb of Tutankhamun and although “King Tut” is a household name, his nine-year rule pales in comparison...

Akhenaten Sacrificing Duck to Aten

Relief of Akhenaten Sacrificing Duck to Aten

On this block from a temple relief, Akhenaten, recognizable by his elongated features, holds a duck toward the Aten. With one hand he wrings the bird’s neck before offering it to the god. In this relief, the artist has cut the outlines of the figures into the surface in a technique called sunk relief. Sunk...

Colossal of King Akhenaten

Colossal of King Akhenaten

A colossal statue that represents Akhenaten standing with his arms folded, holding the flail and heka scepters. He is depicted with his particular realistic features; long face, narrow eyes, the long protruding chin, and the fleshy lips. The king is shown naked, without any distinctive sexual organ, which is thought, by some Egyptologists to represent...

Finger Ring depicting King Akhenaten and Queen Nefertiti

Finger Ring of Akhenaten and Nefertiti

This gold ring of Akhenaten and Nefertiti was found at Tell el-Amarna. The hieroglyphs may be read as an ideogram. The two seated figures are probably Akhenaten (left) and Nefertiti (right) as the deities Shu (air as indicated by the feather he holds) and Tefnut (moisture). They were father and mother of the earth and...

Limestone fragmentary stele with Akhenaten

Fragmentary stele of Akhenaten

In this stele, Akhenaten is slouched on a low-backed, cushioned chair with side struts in the form of the ancient royal symbol for the unification of Upper and Lower Egypt, which is partly obscured by the long sash of his pleated kilt. The Aten disk was above him, in the center of the stele. The...

Statue of Akhenaten Kissing his Daughter

Statue of Akhenaten Kissing his Daughter

This unfinished limestone statue of King Akhenaten kissing his daughter is of high artistic quality. It was discovered in a sculptor’s atelier, or workshop, at Tell el-Amarna. It depicts King Akhenaten supporting on his knee one of his daughters, probably Meritaten. The king sits on a stool wearing a short-sleeved tunic and the Blue Khepresh...

Statue of Akhenaten and Nefertiti

Statue of Akhenaten and Nefertiti

This small, painted votive statue depicts King Akhenaten and his Great Wife Nefertiti. The king and queen are shown hand in hand (a notedly unusual pose in New Kingdom artwork), as if walking forward together. They stand quite far apart, entirely unbending as they stare straight ahead, without the ghost of a smile. They are...

House altar of King Akhenaten and his family

House altar of Akhenaten and his family

This small stele of Akhenaten and his family, probably used as a home altar. It gives an seldom opportunity to view a scene from the private live of the king and queen. We see Akhenaten and Nefertiti shown with the three oldest of their five daughters. While the daughters are being held and caressed by...

Stele of Akhenaten and his family. Egyptian Museum, Cairo. JE 44865

Stela of Akhenaten and his family

The limestone stela shows King Akhenaten and his family as a “Holy Family.” It is considered to be an icon and was intended to be kept in a private chapel of an Amarna house. The stele, topped by the cavetto cornice, is decorated with a scene of an intimate moment from the daily life of...