35 MEDINET GUROB.
 
Home
Title page
Contents
Search

 

XXI, 44). Probably they had been lost by the labourer's wife when sitting on the sand-heap thrown out while digging the tomb. The linen has 42 threads of woof and 94 of warp in the inch, the hemming is very regular, 22 stitches to the inch, and about 10 stitches in the seaming. From being lost while new, and buried in close, fine sand, the cloth is of the most perfectly fresh condition, as tough and sweet as when made. Another piece of linen has 52 in the woof to 100 in the warp. Coarser stuff was also made, some of it only 2 and 4 threads to the inch. Rope was made of flax, of rush, and of palm fibre; and the skill with which it was worked in joints is not exceeded by the modern sailor. Baskets were made of the square, flat, form in palm-fibre rope, bound round with rope ; and also of palm-leaf in the modern circular form, and with palm-rope edging, A comb for carding fibre, 4 inches wide, cut into 18 teeth, and also wooden stampers for smoothing leather, like the modern ones of brass, were both found in the town. A large quantity of balls of waste thread occurred in various houses ; they seem to have been the cores on which thread was wound, probably for the use of weavers.

Of agricultural tools, only two blades of hoes were found, and one rake; but a model hoe occurred in one of the tombs (XVIII, 15). Grain scoops are common, four being left-handed and one right.

69. The toilet and personal articles are commoner than in the XIIth dynasty ; perhaps because we have the tombs as well as the town of the XVIIIth. A remarkable mirror was found in a tomb, XVIII, 4; the handle is Egyptian in idea, but yet foreign in the details ; the motive of the female holding a dove is essentially Asiatic, the type of face, the treatment of the hair, and the lengthy limbs are not Egyptian. We probably see here the work of a Phoenician or Kypriote artist trained in Egypt, but retaining his foreign feelings. It is particularly valuable to obtain such a prototype of the great class of figure handles (which became so general in the west in subsequent centuries), now dated back to the foreign colonies in Egypt during the thirteenth century BC. Another mirror of the same outline but without a handle was found with beads of the beginning of the XIXth dynasty in another tomb. Also a third one in the town. The combs (XVIII, 2, 3) have shallower backs than in the earlier age : and no double combs are known. The kohl vases are always of the tubular form, sometimes double and with a lid; they are commonly of wood, sometimes merely a reed, and once of ivory, with cartouches of Amenhotep III and his daughter, now at Bulak. Hair pins are of wood with decorated heads (XVIII, 7, 8, 9), and very seldom of bone or ivory.

The head-rest, or wooden pillow, which plays such a constant part in later times, seems to have been scarcely known in the XIIth dynasty, though one or two royal ones of alabaster have come down from the old kingdom. In the XVIIIth, however, it is very common, and is often found in the tombs, generally broken. I have taken out a fine head-rest, broken in two, from the inside of a coffin of the XIXth dynasty: it was laid by the head of the body. Sometimes the stem and base are finely fluted in true Ramesside style. One folding head-rest (XVIII, 17) comes from a tomb. A fan handle (XVIII, 29) split and tied together anciently, was found in the town ; and a model fan and feather of painted wood comes from a tomb. A piece of a toilet jar of wood is carved with a spirited field scene (XVIII, 31)with piebald calves galloping and reposing amid the herbage. A similar carving, with a hunting scene, was found in the later burials at Kahun of this age, and kept at Bulak.

Small boxes of the duck form are well known ; one in ivory (XVIII, 10) was found with a mirror and Ramesside beads above mentioned. The lid of another in wood has the lotus pattern (XVIII, 11). And a third of duck form, with double-leaf wings, held by a swimming girl, was found in the Sadi-amia tomb, No. 20: this was of beautiful work and condition, and is now at Bulak. A large alabaster jar, of which some pieces were found in a tomb, has the cartouches of Tutankhamen and his wife Ankhs-amen (XVIII, 25). The small, alabaster vase with gazelle-head handles (XVIII, 16) was found in the town, as also the alabaster bottle (XVIII, 1). And the alabaster jar and saucer (XVIII, 5. 6) belong to the Sadi-amia tomb; together with the ushabti (inscription, XXIV, 2), which is of fine work in the dark grey limestone of the time of Ramessu II. The very curious bennu painting (XXIV, 3) belongs to the same; this is executed by hollowing out a block of rock crystal, like a watch-glass, polished inside and out; the painting of "Bennu son of Ra" was then done in black on the inside, lined with gold leaf, and filled up solid with resin and plaster. This belonged to a wooden pectoral, on the other side of which was the lazuli plaque (XXIV, 4), as I believe: the tomb had been disturbed, and the lazuli was found by some boys subsequent to our clearance.

 


home - previous page - next page