Pepi I presenting wine

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Pepi I kneeling and presenting two bowls of wine (Brooklyn Museum).

This lovely statue shows Pepi I offering wine in typical rounded bowls, presumably to Hathor, whose name is mentioned in the inscription. It is made of schist, with eyes of alabaster and obsidian, inlaid in a copper encasing. A hole in the king’s forehead indicates that the statue originally wore a uraeus, perhaps made of a more valuable material.

The king is represented kneeling, his torso slightly bent forward out of respect for the god(dess?). His face is depicted with a particular liveliness and expression, whereas the torso is more stylised. An elongated cartouche, naming the king as the son of Hathor, is written before his knees.

The origin of the statue is unknown. The fact that Hathor is named in the inscription as well as Pepi's known involvement with this goddess's temple at Dendara both make it likely that this statue once stood in the temple of Hathor at Dendara. Indeed, several reliefs found throughout the Greek-Roman Period temple of Dendara show statues of Pepi I. More than 2000 years after his reign, statues of Pepi I adoring Hathor would thus still be part of her temple’s inventory.


© Jacques Kinnaer 1997 - 2017