Roman Period Egyptian Mummy Portrait Depicting a Young Man - X.0380 - For Sale
Roman Period Egyptian Mummy Portrait Depicting a Young Man - X.0380
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Origin: Fayum, Egypt
Circa: 2 nd Century AD
Dimensions: 14.2" (36.1cm) high x 8.2" (20.8cm) wide
Style: Roman Period
Medium: Paint on Wood
Our evocative portrait depicts an aristocratic young man with curly hair, his head inclined toward our right hand side with the glance of his enormous eyes cast far into the distance. He appears to be wearing a white tunic without additional accessories. Recent scholarship suggests that such portraits may have been displayed in the homes of the elite members of Roman Egypt’s society in much that same way that we display portraits and photographs of our loved ones and friends today. Upon death, these portraits were reverentially entrusted to the funerary priests who ceremoniously attached them over the head of the deceased’s wrapped mummy.
There is a good parallel for our portrait in the collections of the British Museum [inventory number EA 6713] which is still attached to its intact mummy. That example is dated to the period between 200-250 AD, to which era our example should likewise be assigned.