The Freud Museum

Head of a Woman

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3307, Head of a Woman, Middle Kingdom (12th Dynasty); 1938-1759 B.C.

Culture: Egyptian
Material: basalt
Dimensions: h. 2 _ in 6.3 cm

This fragmentary figure of a woman was once part of a group statue, probably a pair meant to represent her and her husband. Such a statue would have been used for funerary purposes. Small mortuary statues were made in mass quantities and the owner’s name was inscribed or painted on after purchase. They thus represent an ideal rather than an individual portrait. The finely-modeled, ageless face with broad nose, wide-set eyes, and tripartite wig resembles portraits of kings and queens, suggesting that the general populace sought to imitate royal style.

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