Le temple de Touy / The Tuya Temple

Right Ear of a Canopic Jar


Among the artefacts found during the excavation of a shaft-tomb situated near the shaft-tomb of the Divine Adoratrice Karomama (excavation season 2015) and dating also to the Third Intermediate Period, there is the right ear of the jackal-headed lid of a canopic jar (or of a jackal-headed dummy canopic jar), made of limestone. There are very good reasons to think that this tomb and the tomb of Karomama have been robbed exactly at the same time and by the same team, which leads us to the antiquities dealer Triantaphylos, also named “Wardi”, known to have sold in 1844 nine ushabtis and two canopic jars coming from the tomb of Karomama to Karl R. Lepsius.

Considering this, we wonder whether the canopic jar to which the right ear belonged (and maybe the three others canopic jars) may not have also been sold in the 1840s by Triantaphylos and may not have eventually landed in a public collection, unless they are still kept in a private collection.

In sum, this is a kind of a “message in a canopic jar”, in the hope that someone would know of a canopic jar that could fit with the remaining ear… The photos and a description of the piece can be found right below.

Any help would be very welcome!
Nicolas Gauthier.


Right ear of the jackal-headed lid of a canopic jar or of a jackal-headed dummy canopic jar

Material: limestone

Dimensions: Height: 8.3 cm; Width: 5.1 cm; Depth: 5.1 cm

Two features are especially worthy of note: the yellow line underlining the base of the ear and the remains of black resin on the break, probably from an antic repair. There may be similar remains on the lid, where the ear was.


Ushabti of the divine adoratrice Karomama (22nd dynasty; c. 840 BC)

The small temple built on the North side of the Ramesseum, “the temple of a million years” of Ramses II (c. 1279-1212 BC) on the left bank of the Nile at Luxor, has been the object of detailed excavations since 2010. Headed by Benoit Lurson, this excavation is a project of the Egyptological Institute of the University of Leipzig, in association with the National Center for Scientific Research (https://www.gko.uni-leipzig.de/aegyptologisches-institut/forschung/projekte/theben-west.html). The temple, which had been erected by Ramses in honour of his mother, Queen Tuya, was transformed into a necropolis during the Third Intermediate Period  (c. 1075-652 BC).



During the 2014 digging season, the shaft tomb of the divine adoratrice Karomama (22nd Dynasty; c. 840 BC), well known for her bronze statue displayed in the Louvre Museum (http://www.louvre.fr/oeuvre-notices/statue-de-la-divine-adoratrice-d-amon-karomama), was discovered in the northern sanctuary of the temple. Around one hundred fragments of ushabtis, the funerary statuettes so characteristic of Ancient Egypt, were discovered. During the 2015 digging season, with the continuation of the excavation of the tomb, an equal number of fragments were found, which enabled the team to reconstruct several of these ushabtis.


Here follows a detailed presentation of one of these, as thanks for the support of the Association Kheper, which financially contributed to the 2015 digging season.



Nicolas Gauthier,
(translation Chris Harvey).

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Oushebti de la divine adoratrice Karomama (XXIIe dynastie ; vers 840 av. J.-C.)

Depuis 2010, le petit temple contigu sur son côté nord au Ramesseum, le « temple de millions d’années » de Ramsès II (env. 1279-1212 av. J.-C.) élevé sur la rive occidentale de Louxor, fait l’objet d’une fouille systématique. Ce projet de recherche, dirigé par Benoît Lurson, associe l’Institut d’Égyptologie de l’Université de Leipzig et le Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique (https://www.gko.uni-leipzig.de/aegyptologisches-institut/forschung/projekte/theben-west.html). Construit par le roi en l’honneur de sa mère, la reine Touy, ce temple fut transformé en nécropole après le Nouvel Empire (env. 1543-1075 av. J.-C.), pendant la Troisième Période Intermédiaire (env. 1075-652 av. J.-C.).


Lors de la campagne de fouilles 2014, la tombe à puits de la divine adoratrice Karomama (XXIIe dynastie ; vers 840 av. J.-C.), bien connue pour sa statue en bronze conservée au Musée du Louvre (http://www.louvre.fr/oeuvre-notices/statue-de-la-divine-adoratrice-d-amon-karomama), était découverte dans le sanctuaire nord du temple. Une centaine de fragments d’oushebtis, ces statuettes funéraires si caractéristiques de l’Égypte ancienne, étaient mis au jour. Lors de la campagne 2015, qui a vu la poursuite de la fouille de la sépulture, autant de fragments étaient découverts, qui ont permis de reconstituer plusieurs de ces oushebtis.


C’est l’un d’entre eux que nous présentons ici, en remerciement à l’A.S.B.L. Kheper pour le soutien financier apporté à la campagne 2015.



Nicolas Gauthier.

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