About this object

The oval bezel is decorated with two schematically rendered images of the dwarf-god, Bes, flanked by crudely formed ankh signs. Both images of Bes show him wearing an extremely wide flaring headdresses and carrying knives in each hand. Other knives possibly project from their feet. The purported findspot of this gold stirrup-shaped ring, the royal tomb of Akhenaten at Amarna, would provide clear evidence of its date. Unfortunately, the early history has been reconstructed from hearsay and, despite some scholars’ acceptance of the story linking the ring to Akhenaten’s intended burial place, such claims cannot be inclusively proven. Nevertheless, the presence of two Bes images in the same figure scene does narrow considerably the range of possible dates for the ring. Pairs of figures appear only during two New Kingdom reigns, those of Amenhotep III and his son Akhenaten. It’s previous owner, Sir Henry Rider Haggard, believed the ring was once worn by Queen Tiye, who was described as “the feminine Henry VIII of Egypt” in a 1892 interview with Haggard in ‘The Strand Magazine’. Haggard wore the ring for a year but broke it getting out of a cab. The ring was then repaired and kept with some others inside a tiny silver Icelandic Communion open cup, in Haggard’s billiard room at Ditchingham House, Norfolk.

Height of bezel: 10 mm; width of bezel: 17 mm; internal diam. of hoop: 17 mm; depth (front to back) 20 mm.

Object specifics

  • Type
    Personal Ornament
  • Culture
    New Kingdom
  • Artist/Maker
    Unknown or unrecorded
  • Place made
    Africa: Northern Africa: Egypt: Tell el Amarna
  • Date made
    1352 BC - 1336 BC (Dynasty 18) about
  • Materials
    Gold
  • Location
    Item not currently on display
  • Acquisition
    Purchased from the collections of Norwich Castle Museum, 1956
  • Collector
    Henry Rider Haggard
  • Place collected
    Africa: Northern Africa: Egypt: Tell el Amarna
  • Date collected
    1882 about
  • Measurements
    19 mm x 19 mm x 9 mm x 8.82 g
  • Related people
    Henry Rider Haggard (Collector, previous owner); Andrew Lang (Previous owner); Norwich Castle Museum and Art Gallery (Previous owner)

Where is this object from?

Explore related

Publications

  • Egyptian Treasures in Europe volume 4: National Museums & Galleries on Merseyside, Liverpool

    Andrea Davies and Dirk van der Plas (ed.)

    Author: Andrea Davies and Dirk van der Plas (ed.)
    Publisher: Utrecht University
    Date: 2001
    Description: CD ROM with 1500 objects from World Museum's Egyptian collection, including some destroyed in World War Two. This is now available online: http://www.globalegyptianmuseum.org/default.aspx

  • Egypt's Golden Age: The Art of Living in the New Kingdom 1558-1085 BC

    Brovarski, Edward, Doll, Susan K; Freed, Rita E (editors)

    Author: Brovarski, Edward, Doll, Susan K; Freed, Rita E (editors)
    Publisher: Museum of Fine Arts, Boston
    Date: 1982
    Description: Written as a catalogue to the exhibition, 'Egypt's Golden Age: The Art of Living in the New Kingdom 1558-1085 BC', organised by the Museum of Fine arts, Boston, USA. The exhibition toured the USA at 3 venues: Museum of Fine arts, Boston, 3 February - 2 May 1982; Houston Museum of Natural Science, 14 July - 19 September 1982; The Walters Art Gallery, Baltimore, 27 October 1982 - 2 January 1983. Objects were lent from 35 institutions and private collections.

  • Farao's van de Zon: Achnaton, Nefertiti, Toetanchamon

    Rita E Freed, J. Yvonne Markowitz and Sue H. D'Auria (editors)

    Author: Rita E Freed, J. Yvonne Markowitz and Sue H. D'Auria (editors)
    Publisher: Rijksmuseum van Oudheden,
    Date: 1999
    Description: Written as a catalogue for an exhibition, 'Pharaohs of the Sun: Akhenaten, Nefertitit and Tutankhamun'. Exhibition dates: Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, 14 November 1999 - 6 February 6 2000; Los Angeles County Museum of Art, 19 March - 6 June 2000; Art Institute of Chicago, 17 July - 24 September 2000; Rijksmuseum van Oudheden, Leiden, 23 November 2000 - 18 February 2001.

  • Gifts of The Nile: Ancient Egyptian Arts and Crafts in Liverpool Museum

    Bienkowski, Piotr; Tooley, Angela

    Author: Bienkowski, Piotr; Tooley, Angela
    Publisher: Her Majesty's Stationery Office
    Date: 1995
    Description: A 130 page illustrated book that focuses on the Egyptian antiquities in World Museum's collections to provide a colourful introduction to the land and its culture in the Pharaonic period. An appendix explains the history of the collection and includes information about the Lady Lever Art Gallery Egyptian collection, which is also part of National Museums Liverpool.

  • 'Illustrated Interviews. No. VII.--Mr. H. Rider Haggard' in The Strand Magazine No. 13 (January 1892)

    How, Harry

    Author: How, Harry
    Publisher: The Strand Magazine
    Date: 1892
    Description: A 15 page illustrated interview with Hnery Rider Haggard. Available online https://archive.org/details/StrandMagazine13

  • Pharaohs of the Sun: Akhenaten, Nefertiti, Tutankhamun

    Rita E Freed, J. Yvonne Markowitz and Sue H. D'Auria (editors)

    Author: Rita E Freed, J. Yvonne Markowitz and Sue H. D'Auria (editors)
    Publisher: Museum of Fine Arts, Boston
    Date: 1999
    Description: Written as a catalogue for an exhibition, 'Pharaohs of the Sun: Akhenaten, Nefertitit and Tutankhamun'. Exhibition dates: Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, 14 November 1999 - 6 February 6 2000; Los Angeles County Museum of Art, 19 March - 6 June 2000; Art Institute of Chicago, 17 July - 24 September 2000; rijksmuseum van Oudheden, Leiden, 23 November 2000 - 18 February 2001.

  • 'The Nugent and Haggard Collections of Egyptian Antiquities', in The Journal of Egyptian Archaeology, vol. 4, no. 1 (January 1917) pp. 39-46

    Blackman, A. M.

    Author: Blackman, A. M.
    Publisher: Egypt Exploration Society
    Date: 1917
    Description: An article that describes 9 Egyptian artefacts in the collection of Sir H. Rider Haggard kept at his home in Ditchingham, Norfolk. This is before they were donated to Norwich Castle Museum and subsequently purchased by Liverpool Museum in 1956.

  • The Royal Tomb at El-'Amarna vol. I

    Martin, Geoffrey Thorndike

    Author: Martin, Geoffrey Thorndike
    Publisher: Egypt Exploration Society
    Date: 1989
    Description: The Royal Tomb at Tell el Amarna was discovered in the 1880s by local people. Many objects from the tomb are in museums and have been published in this 2 volume publication. World Museum has 2 gold finger rings from the tomb that are included in this catalogue of finds.

Events

  • Pharaohs of the Sun: Akhenaten, Nefertiti and Tutankhamun

    Start date: 1999-11-14
    End date: 1999-11-14
    Description: An exhibition that toured 3 venues in the USA and 1 venue in The Netherlands. Organised by the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, it included nearly 300 artefacts from more than 30 institutions and private collections. Exhibition dates: Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, 14 November 1999 - 6 February 6 2000; Los Angeles County Museum of Art, 19 March - 6 June 2000; Art Institute of Chicago, 17 July - 24 September 2000; Rijksmuseum van Oudheden, Leiden, 23 November 2000 - 18 February 2001.

  • Egypt's Golden Age: The Art of Living in the New Kingdom 1558-1085 BC

    Start date: 1982-02-03
    End date: 1982-02-03
    Description: An exhibition organised by the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, USA. The exhibition toured the USA at 3 venues: Museum of Fine arts, Boston, 3 February - 2 May 1982; Houston Museum of Natural Science, 14 July - 19 September 1982; The Walters Art Gallery, Baltimore, 27 October 1982 - 2 January 1983. Objects were lent from 35 institutions and private collections.

Ownership

Previous owners

  • Norwich Castle Museum and Art Gallery

    Owned from: 1925
    How acquired: Bequest
    Owned until: 1956
    Disposal method: Unknown or unrecorded
  • Henry Rider Haggard

    Owned from: Unknown or unrecorded
    How acquired: Purchased
    Owned until: 1925
    Disposal method: Unknown or unrecorded
  • Andrew Lang

    Owned from: Unknown or unrecorded
    How acquired: Purchased
    Owned until: Unknown or unrecorded
    Disposal method: Unknown or unrecorded
Object view = Humanities
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