2 December 2021 The Future is the Product of the Past

Female pharaoh’s temple reveals teamwork of Egypt’s ‘ancient masters’

Despite the widely acknowledged monumentality and durability of ancient Egyptian sculpture, carved reliefs, and paintings the makers of these works remain mostly unknown.

For a long time, academics considered tomb and temple decorations as sources of knowledge about ancient Egyptian religious beliefs rather than works of art in their own right. Little is known about individual Egyptian artists and their methods. Textual evidence suggests the presence of sculptors and painters, but rarely provides specifics about their work or who they were.

In a new approach, archaeologists have revealed that Egyptian sculptors worked in teams rather than solo artisans.

Anastasiia Stupko-Lubczynska and colleagues from the University of Warsaw researched the temple of Hatshepsut, one of Egypt’s few female pharaohs who reigned from 1478 to 1458 B.C.E.

To better understand the work of decorating ancient temples, Anastasiia Stupko-Lubczynska, an archaeologist at the University of Warsaw, and his colleagues studied the Temple of Hatshepsut.

Maat-Ka-Re Hatshepsut (XVIIIth Dynasty, circa 1479-1457 BC) was the daughter of Aa-kheper-ka-Re Thutmosis I, and the wife of Aa-kheper-en-Re Thutmosis II. She was the third woman in Egyptian history to take up the Pharaoh’s throne.

Queen Hatshepsut was a great builder sovereign, who showed evidence of outstanding originality. The temple of Deir el-Bahari is the most spectacular example of it.

Hatshepsut temple, which stretches 273 meters by 105 meters, was built almost 3500 years ago at Deir el-Bahari, near modern-day Luxor.

Stupko-Lubczynska was there as part of the University of Warsaw’s Polish-Egyptian expedition’s painstaking—and ongoing—effort to clean and restore the temple’s damaged walls.

Stupko-Lubczynska and a team of draftspeople spent hundreds of hours between 2006 and 2013 documenting the chapel walls by hand, copying the carvings on sheets of plastic film at a one-to-one scale.

Hatshepsut temple

During the procedure, the archaeologist discovered minute features in the chapel’s fragile limestone, such as awkward chisel strokes and subsequent adjustments.

“Because we have so many figures with repetitive details, we can compare the details and workmanship,” Stupko-Lubczynska says. “If you look at enough of them, it’s easy to see when someone was doing it properly.”

Some figures, she and her coworkers saw, were noticeably worse—legs and torsos with sloppily chiseled edges, or many chisels blows to sculpt wig curls that only required two or three precise strokes elsewhere.

Stupko-Lubczynska said today in Antiquity that the study showed the painting was a collaborative effort done in stages by different painters.

“Maybe the master artisans came in at the end to finish the figure.” With no natural light in the cavernous, windowless hall, there must have also been assistants holding oil lamps crowding onto the scaffolds.” she says.

As a result of the research, the process of creating Ancient Egyptian reliefs was well understood.

The examination of the procedures utilized and the sequencing of the acts necessary to manufacture an item is known as the chaîne opératoire in archaeology (operational sequence). The chaîne opératoire approach was applied to the wall reliefs in the Chapel of Hatshepsut, the largest room in the temple built for the eponymous female pharaoh.

To read the work

Banner
Related Post

In Poland’s “Death Valley,” new evidence of Nazi atrocities

18 August 2021

18 August 2021

In October 1939, between 30,000 and 35,000 Polish intellectuals, Polish civilians, Jews and Czechs, and German prisoners from psychiatric institutions...

The “food” thousands of years ago may be the ancestor of a Turkish dessert

25 July 2021

25 July 2021

The rock paintings and kitchen materials found in the cave, which were discovered by a shepherd and emerged as a...

Hebrew University Archaeologists have Unveiled 7,000-year-old Seal İmpressions

10 June 2021

10 June 2021

Israeli archaeologists unveiled a 7,000-year-old clay seal impression used for commerce and protection of property, the Hebrew University of Jerusalem...

Zeus Temple’s entrance was found in western Turkey’s Aizanoi Ancient City

31 July 2021

31 July 2021

During recent digs, the monumental entrance gate of the Zeus Temple sanctuary in the ancient city of Aizanoi, located in...

Archaeologists in eastern Newfoundland unearth the oldest English coin ever found in Canada

14 November 2021

14 November 2021

Archaeologists in eastern Newfoundland have unearthed a rare two-penny piece minted between 1493 and 1499 more than 520 years ago....

Archaeologists Unearth Carolingian Silver Treasure Hoard

6 May 2021

6 May 2021

A silver treasure hoard from the 9th century AD has been discovered in Poland‘s Osa and Drwęca basin. The hoard...

Women May Have Ruled El Algar in the Bronze Age

12 March 2021

12 March 2021

The diadem found in the Bronze Age tomb belonging to the El Algar culture may have belonged to a queen....

A statue of God Apollo was found during sewerage works in Afyon city in western Turkey

30 May 2021

30 May 2021

A statue thought to belong to God Apollo was found during sewerage works in Afyon city in western Turkey. During...

One More Missing Links of Evolution Found

29 April 2021

29 April 2021

There is a phenomenon of missing links in the theory of evolution. Theorists of evolution continue to find these missing...

Ancient rubbish dump under Hatshepsut temple reveals hundreds of artifacts

24 November 2021

24 November 2021

Polish archaeologists uncovered a 3,500-year-old dump while working on the reconstruction of the Hathor Goddess Chapel, which is part of...

A 1900-year-old stele was discovered in Turkey’s ancient city of Parion

5 August 2021

5 August 2021

A 1,900-year-old grave stele was found during excavations in Parion, an important ancient port city, near Kemer village in the...

The Historical Building Next To The Million Stone Will Sell

6 February 2021

6 February 2021

Everyone has heard of the Million Stone, which was built during the Byzantine Empire and accepted as the zero points...

In Bergama, the City of Greek Gods, the People Kept the Cult of Cybele Alive

25 August 2021

25 August 2021

The figurines of Cybele, the goddess of the fertility of Anatolia, and the presence of sanctuaries unearthed in the Ancient...

Excavations of Aççana Mound, the Capital of the Mukish Kingdom, Continue

16 July 2021

16 July 2021

2021 excavations have started at Aççana Höyük, the old city of Alalah, in Hatay’s Reyhanlı district. The ancient city of...

Remnants of ancient fire temple discovered in heart of Alborz mountains in Iran

26 June 2021

26 June 2021

An Iranian archaeology team has discovered relics of an ancient fire temple in Savadkuh county, located in the center of...

Comments
Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *