Walking stick of Tutankhamun
When king Tutankhamun grasped this walking stick, the enemies were turned upside down so that they could not harm the king. At the other end of the stick, a papyrus bears the king’s cartouche.
Most of the ancient Egyptian kings and nobles were depicted holding a cane or a staff as it was a sign of nobility as well as helping him to kneel upon it during old age.
130 walking sticks were found in the tomb of Tutankhamun. They were originally thought to merely represent power but now are thought to be ancient forms of crutches or canes. It is believed that king Tutankhamun may have used them because he had difficulty walking and standing.
Related: Sandals of Tutankhamun
This cane is one of a group that depicts the enemies of King Tutankhamun. The king used these canes in ceremonies during his lifetime. Two of the king’s enemies are represented on this cane.
The first one is a hairy Asiatic who is wearing clothing that is decorated with ribbons and with circular and floral designs. His hands, face, and feet are made of ivory to imitate his white skin.
The second enemy is an African whose face and limbs are made of ebony that simulates his dark skin. He wears a pleated garment with multicolored streamers.
Although King Tutankhamun died at age 19 they found in his tomb (KV62) around 130 complete and fragmentary examples of sticks and canes from the Antechamber, the annex and the burial chamber.
This led Carter to believe that Tutankhamun was an amateur collector of walking sticks or canes. This cane is one of a group that depicts the enemies of king Tutankhamun.
The king used these canes in ceremonies during his lifetime. Two of the king’s enemies are represented on this cane.
New Kingdom, late 18th Dynasty, reign of Tutankhamun, ca. 1332-1323 BC. From the Tomb of Tutankhamun (KV62), Valley of the Kings, West Thebes. Now in the Egyptian Museum, Cairo. JE 61732