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HOME : Egyptian Antiquities : Moulds : Egyptian clay mould for Ushabtis
Egyptian clay mould for Ushabtis - ES.6391
Origin: Egypt
Circa: 664 BC to 525 BC
Dimensions: 5.6" (14.2cm) high x 3.1" (7.9cm) wide x 1.2" (3.0cm) depth
Medium: Clay
Condition: Extra Fine

Location: Great Britain
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clay mould for the production of mummiform faience Ushabtis. Ushabtis were funerary figurines placed in tombs among the grave goods and were intended to act as substitutes for the deceased, should he be called upon to do the manual labour in the afterlife. They were used from the Middle Kingdom (around 1900 BC) until the end of the Ptolemaic Period, nearly 2000 years later. Ushabtis were believed to magically animate after the dead had been judged, and work for the dead person as a substitute labourer in the field of Osiris. This is why they sometimes carry hoes, to execute the hard manual labours mentioned in Chapter VI of the Book of the Dead: “whether it be to plough the fields, or to fill the channels with water, or to carry sand from the East to the West”. Moulds are exceedingly rare, as they can be found only in the original ancient workshops, were they would have been used to make the high number of statuettes needed to fill the space around the sarcophagus in the burial chamber. Moulds for the production of Ushabtis are part of the most important collection of Egyptian antiquities in the world, including the Museum of Cairo and the Egyptian Museum of Turin. A positive is provided along with the purchase of the mould. - (ES.6391)


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