Antique Egyptian Stone Ushabti of Ancient Middle Kingdom Funerary Statue For Sale

Antique Egyptian Stone Ushabti of Ancient Middle Kingdom Funerary Statue

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Antique Egyptian Stone Ushabti of Ancient Middle Kingdom Funerary Statue:

Antique Egyptian Stone Ushabti of Ancient Middle Kingdom Funerary Statue Antique Egyptian Stone Ushabti of Ancient Middle Kingdom Funerary Statue

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Up For sale, A very unique Collectable Antique Replica (Cairo Museum) Solid Statue of Ancient Egyptian Ushabti. It is close to 4\" inches tall & has Egyptian Heliographic writing on the Front…You will be impressed by its stunning details


 Physical: 9.8cm (3.9\" inches) Tall, 3.5cm (1.4\") Wide & 2.5cm (1\") Depth, it has Egyptian heliographic writing on the Front.....Made of Limestone....close to [75 grams] in weight.


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Historical Outline

The ushabti:
An existence of eternal servitude    The ancient Egyptians lived lives of obligations: the king, responsible for the world order and minor concerns like proper Nile floods and the welfare of his people, had to perform the ceremonies necessary before the respective gods; his servants, the noblemen, scribes and priests, served the king by shouldering most of his responsibilities, at times even impersonating him before the gods; while the common people were duty-bound to do the offerding of the royal administrators.
Ushabti of King Taharka
Petrie Museum website
    These duties did not cease with death. The after-life was not a place which ran itself. The fields still had to be ploughed, the wheat reaped, the bread baked and the beer brewed: the deceased were going to be kept very busy. Fortunately for the rich and powerful not used to manual labour, stand-ins could be bought for as little as two hundredths of a deben, though one surmises that those who could afford the best the country could produce would not be satisfied with personal substitutes as cheaply made as these. The answer to their prayers for release from eternal drudgery was a little statuette called an ushabti [6], variously also referred to as shawabti (in the Thebaid) and shabti [2].
    Nor did the less well-off fancy an eternity of toil. During the New Kingdom there were still few of these, such as the workman Setau from Deir el Medina who expected his ushabti to answer \"Here I am!\" just as the ushabtis of his deceased superiors did when these were called to labour in the fields of the underworld and build irrigation ditches there.
    Some think that the name of the ushabti stems from the Egyptian word for answer, as the ushabti was expected to answer the call to duty since the early days of the Coffin Texts:
O ushabti, if I am called upon, if I am appointed to do any work which is done on the necropolis .... even as the man is bounden, namely to cultivate the fields, to flood the river-banks or to carry the sand of the East to the West, then speak thou \'Here am I!\'
Coffin Text 472
A. Gardiner, Egypt of the Pharaohs: An Introduction, p.32
others doubt that this is the source of the name.
    These first \'answerers\' may have been virtual, as the oldest ushabti figurines, crude, uninscribed, often nude representations of the deceased, that were found, date to the beginning of the Middle Kingdom, [8] some time after their mention in the Coffin Texts, spells which were during the New Kingdom incorporated into the so-called Books of the Dead. [3] When they became part of the tomb equipment they had the shape of mummies with their arms folded across their chest, and they were inscribed with the titles and names of their owners. Spells were written on ushabtis from the late Middle Kingdom onwards.
    Strictly speaking, only those figurines intended to perform the duties of the deceased are considered to be ushabtis. They need not have the form of mummies, as some New Kingdom ushabtis wearing everyday clothes prove.
    If at the beginning the ushabti represented the deceased, later it came to be perceived more and more as a servant and during the late New Kingdom was referred to as Hm, i.e. servant or slave.
    Placed in coffins since the 19th dynasty a text, from which the following passage is an excerpt, calls on the gods to protect the deceased who had died miserably, killed by his brother and who had nobody to protect him. According to this spell the ushabtis were seen as slaves offered to Osiris by the deceased and not as his alter egos, but separate from him, and his right to receive service from them stemmed from the fact that he had bought them:
Behold the ushabtis, the slaves, men and women, they belong to your majesty, Osiris, they were all his slaves when they were on earth, it is he who acquired them. Make him direct them at the right moment, make them work in his (i.e. the deceased\'s) stead, at any time one remembers him.
J. Cerny, Le caractère des Oushebtis d\'après les idées du Nouvel Empire, BIFAO 41 (1942), p.119
    This development of demotion was accompanied by an ever-increasing number of ushabtis being placed in tombs. In the tomb of Seti I Belzoni found more than 700 ushabtis. At the height of this proliferation during the Third Intermediate Period many tombs contained one worker ushabti for every day of the year and 36 overseer ushabtis, each \'responsible\' for ten labourers. These overseers, recognizable by the way they kept one arm pressed against the side of the body while there was a flail in the other hand, became rare during the Late Period, though the number of ordinary ushabtis remained high until it declined under the Ptolemies.
    The simple act of buying ushabtis and placing them in the tomb was not always deemed to be sufficient to ensure their obedience. Neskhons, wife of the High Priest Pinodjem II under the 21st dynasty, acquired an unspecified number of faience ushabtis, and offered her purchase to the oracle of Amen for approval:
The contents of the writing placed before Amen-nesti-tawi of the temple of the solar obelisk in the year 5, 4th month of summer, day 2: Amen-nesti-tawi of the temple of the solar obelisk, the great god, says in two copies of the writing which attest: Concerning all which they have paid to the makers of faience for the ushabtis made for Neskhons, daughter of Tahenthoth, in copper, clothing, loaves of bread, cakes, fish likewise as all that has been paid to them (i.e. the makers) for them (i.e. the ushabtis) and will also be paid to them for them, the makers of faience are paid by this (this) being the payment for their value.
The Roger and McCullum tablets
J. Cerny, Le caractère des Oushebtis d\'après les idées du Nouvel Empire, BIFAO 41 (1942), p.110
Wooden lid of ushabti box, inscribed Khaemwaset
New Kingdom
Source: Petrie Museum website, UC16398

    Ushabtis were between about 10 and 30 cm tall. They were made of various materials: wax, wood, clay, hard stone like granite, but most often of faience. [7] When numbers of ushabtis were big they were frequently kept in decorated wooden ushabti-boxes or in painted pottery jars.

1: Uninscribed Middle Kingdom figurine made of alabaster (Petrie Museum UC18822)
2: Wooden 19th dynasty mummy figurine in coffin, with an inscription on the front (UC10724)
3: Faience overseer ushabti, 22nd dynasty (UC29961)
4: Pottery ushabti, 21st dynasty (UC39988)
5: 18th dynasty ushabti made of black granite (UC40327)
6: Glazed ushabti carrying tools, beautifully worked and inscribed, 26th dynasty (UC28053)
7: Overseer ushabti holding flail, 4th century CE (UC28669)
    During the first millennium BCE embalmment became ever more popular, albeit in a debased form which people who were not wealthy could afford. Together with this sprang up an industry supplying grave goods at reasonable prices. Low quality ushabtis were mass-produced and buried. They are among the most numerous artefacts to survive from ancient times.


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