May 29, 2016
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Gerzeh palette (‘Hathor’, Cow-head palette)

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Gerzeh palette (‘Hathor’, Cow-head palette). © Alain Guilleux.
Cairo Mus. 34173
Gerzeh tomb 59 (S.D. 47-77)
Naqada IIc-d1

As you can see below, it’s interesting how a similar shape is interpreted either as the horns of a cow, the arms of a woman, snakes (actually serpopards) or dogs.

Francesco Raffaele’s website provides more information on this item.

Petrie, The Labyrinth, Gerzeh and Mazguneh pl. VI,7 (also see the related notebook and tomb-card published on CD-rom)
Vandier, Manuel I, 443-444, fig. 297
Petrie, Ceremonial Slate Palettes pl.B5
Arkell, JEA 41, 1955, 125-126 (cf. Quibell-Green, Hierakonpolis II, pl. 59, nr.5 on porphiry vessel fragment)
Arkell, JEA 44, 1958, 5-11 (Hathor bowl) (cf. S. Yeivin, in: JNES 27, 1968/ 37-50, pl. IA, fig. 3 on a sherd from Tel Erani)
Murray, JEA 42, 1956, 86ff., pl. VI,2
Weill, Ire Dynastie II p. 225 (drawing p. 224)
Asselberghs, Chaos en Beheersing … fig. 118
Kaiser, M.D.A.I.K. 46, 1990 p. 296 (cf. seal impression from Abydos U-210, Hartung: MDAIK 54, 1998, 200f., nr.22).
S. Hendrickx, Bovines in Egyptian Predynastic and Early Dynastic Iconography, in: F. Hassan (ed.), Drought, Food and Culture…, 2002, 275-318.
– Updated bibliographical reference:
“Er ist ein Liebling der Frauen” (P. Kaplony) Ägypten und Levante 13, 2003, 107-126 (esp. 119f.).

And specifically:

For the “Hathor/Bat” motif on other objects see the references in the image below and above all: S. Hendrickx, op. cit. 2002, p. 310, Appendix H.
It has been recently found incised on a P-ware bowl sherd (more correctly an ostracon, for the incised on both its faces seem to have been scratched after the jar was broken) from Hierakonpolis loc. HK 29A in a context which is hard to precisely date, but probably late Naqada II or early Naqada III (cf. Hendrickx, Friedman, in: GM 196, 2003, 95ff., and fig. 2; S. Hendrickx, R. Friedman, Chaos and order: A predynastic “Ostracon” from HK29A, in: Nekhen News 15, 2003, 8-9; photo of one side of the ostrakon: Web-Link).
Also see the potmark in B. Adams, Predynastic Egypt, 1988, 50, fig. 30 i (from Naqada) for a similar bovine-motif.

Abydos tomb U-210 small seal impression (Naqada IId). Hartung, MDAIK 54, 1998, pl. 12. Versus Gerzeh t. 59 Palette (Naqada IId).

Abydos tomb U-210 small seal impression (Naqada IId). Hartung, MDAIK 54, 1998, pl. 12.
Versus Gerzeh t. 59 Palette (Naqada IId).


Now, let’s compare it with other stuff from roughly the same period:



Article Categories:
4000 - 3000 BCE · Egypt · Sculpture

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