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Statuette of Lady Itef

Artist Culture
Dynasty 12, 1991–1783 BC
Middle Kingdom, 2055–1650 BC
Egypt, Africa
Stone & mineral
Current Location
On View, Gallery 313
height: 6 1/2 in. (16.5 cm)
Credit Line
Museum Purchase
Public Domain
Object Number
Itef, whose name is inscribed on this sculpture's base, stands at attention with her long, delicate arms held at her sides. Her voluptuous figure is accented by a gossamer linen dress, its wide straps covering her breasts and shoulders. An enormous spiral wig associated with the goddess Hathor, popular in the Middle Kingdom, cascades down her back in undulating curls and frames her delicate face with two bound tresses that tuck behind her ears. During the Middle Kingdom women were rarely portrayed as individuals, and inscriptions were notoriously sloppy. Despite an inscription that identifies this female figure by a man's name and a dedication from "his" mother, this is most likely a funerary sculpture commissioned by a mother for her daughter.
Dr. Fouquet, Paris, France [1]

- 1924
Joseph Brummer, New York, NY, USA

1924 -
Saint Louis Art Museum, purchased from Joseph Brummer [2]

[1] According to a list attached to the invoice and provided by Joseph Brummer, the figure was in the Fouquet Collection [SLAM document files]. To date no published confirmation of this provenance can be located.

[2] Invoice dated January 4, 1924 [SLAM document files]. Minutes of the Administrative Board of Control of the City Art Museum, March 27, 1924.
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