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Stela from ancient Egypt

This small limestone stela from ancient Egypt shows the goddesses of Hathor and Ahmose-Nefertari, with hieroglyphic text describing the worship of these goddesses by a devotee.

The piece is from the New Kingdom village of Deir el-Medina (c 1550-1070 BC), which housed the families of the workmen who constructed and decorated the royal tombs in the Valley of Kings. The workmen had an unusually high level of literacy and were highly skilled – resulting in a high standard of devotional objects in their own village.

Unfortunately, some of the hieroglyphs are missing and the stele is broken but it is still a rare example of this type and style of object in the UK. Kendal Museum is very fortunate in having one of these devotional items in its collection.