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H: 3,7cm. Gold and molten glass. 10 - 0 B.C. Staatliche Sammlung Ägyptischer Kunst, Munich

The dismantling and pillage of Sudanese pyramids by treasure-seeking adventurers is one of the dark sides to the rediscovery of Nubian remains. Ferlini, an Italian doctor, had Queen Amanishakheto's pyramid at Meroë torn apart stone by stone in 1834, then sold off the jewels he discovered to German princes. These are now displayed in museums in Munich and Berlin and have been reunited for this exhibition. This item, like others, presents a synthesis of prevailing influences: Egyptian (the "oudjat" eye, the Meroïtic god wearing the double crown), Hellenistic (the treatment of the face, the lozenge-shaped border) and African (the cowry-shell decoration).


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