About This Artwork


Scene from the Book of the Dead, Third Intermediate Period, Dynasty 21 (1070–946 BC)

Papyrus and pigment
24.5 × 101 cm (9 11/16 × 39 7/8 in.)

Gift of Henry H. Getty, Charles L. Hutchinson, Robert H. Fleming, and Norman W. Harris, 1894.180

The Book of the Dead is a series of religious texts that was placed in the tomb to protect the soul of the deceased. This example is written in script hieroglyphs on papyrus, a paperlike substance made of overlapped strips of fiber from the papyrus plant. Taywhenwtmut, the woman who owned this book, is showing wearing a linen gown and a cone of scented fat on her head. Her gestures show that she is worshipping Osiris, whose flesh is green because he is a god of vegetation and rebirth.

Interpretive Resources

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