Friday, April 29, 2016


The estate manager Wah was buried in a small tomb near the imposing one of his employer, Meketre, an important official who began his career under Mentuhotep II of Dynasty 11 and continued to serve successive kings into early Dynasty 12. Wah's burial was found intact by the Museum excavators and the objects came to the Museum in the division of finds. In 1939, the mummy was unwrapped and many fine objects were discovered. All three of Wah's scarab and bead bracelets (40.3.12-.14) were found in wrappings over the wrists of Wah's mummy. This large silver scarab is of exceptionally fine workmanship. It was cast in several sections that were soldered together. Details on the legs, head, and wing cases and the scroll meander pattern on the base were chased. A gold suspension tube runs through the length of the scarab. Inlaid hieroglyphs on the scarab's wing cases are of electrum, an alloy of gold and silver. Their light color renders them almost invisible unless the scarab is tarnished. The inscription on the left wing case identifies Wah as the estate manager of Meketre whose name appears on the right wing case.

The cornflower and ball beads in this necklace were made by soldering wire rings of several different diameters into the desired forms. The piece is an early example of the technique known as filagree. Discovered with a cache of jewelry in the Valley of the Kings, the necklace is thought to have belonged to Tawosret, wife of the Seti II and regent for her husband's successor Siptah. Tawosret, who reigned Egypt in her own right for several years at the end of Dynasty 19, was one of the few female rulers of Egypt, the most famous of whom are Hatshepsut and Cleopatra VII.

These sandals were part of the funerary equipment belonging to one of three foreign wives of Thutmose III. They are made of thin sheet gold that would not have withstood normal wear; they were intended for funerary use only. The sandals are decorated with details intended to imitate the decoration on leather sandals.

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