About this object

Polished black mudstone or greywacke cosmetic palette in the form of a turtle with protruding head with incised eyes. Ivory inlay is now missing from the eyes. Objects like this were used with a pebble to grind minerals such as malachite to make eyepaint. Chipped in places and the limbs are broken off.

Compare to 'Prehistoric Egypt Corpus' (1921), p. LII, 14 D;
Compare with a similar turtle-shaped palette in the British Museum 37913 dated to Naqada I.

Object specifics

  • Type
    Personal Object
  • Culture
    Predynastic Period (Naqada I)
  • Artist/Maker
    Unknown or unrecorded
  • Place made
    Africa: Northern Africa: Egypt
  • Date made
    3100 - 3500 BC
  • Materials
  • Location
    Item not currently on display
  • Acquisition
    Gift of Joseph Mayer
  • Collector
    Joseph Mayer
  • Place collected
    Africa: Northern Africa: Egypt
  • Date collected
    19th Century
  • Measurements
    17 mm x x 106 mm
  • Related people
    Joseph Mayer (Associated Person, collector, previous owner)

Where is this object from?

Explore related


  • Catalogue of the Mayer Collection Part 1. The Egyptian, Babylonian and Assyrian Antiquities. Second and Revised Edition.

    Gatty, Charles

    Author: Gatty, Charles
    Publisher: The Committee of the Liverpool Free Public Library, Museum and Gallery of Art
    Date: 1879
    Description: Catalogue of most of Joseph Mayer's Egyptian and Near Eastern collection that was on display. It also includes a small number of other collections, such as those given by Mr William Crosfield in 1861, some by Mr Charles Stoess in 1869, and others by Mr J. A. Tinne in 1870. Occasionally reference will be made to the provenance of objects, in particular if they are from the Jospeh Sams or Lord Valentia (ex Henry Salt) collections. There are illustrations of some objects, in particular the amulets, by Mr Ll. Jewitt, FSA. Compared to Mayer's 1852 cataloue there are more detailed descriptions for inscribed objects such as stelae, giving names and titles and the character of the text, provided by Samuel Birch of the British Museum who visited the collections in March 1877.

  • 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.


Previous owners

  • Joseph Mayer

    Owned from: Unknown or unrecorded
    How acquired: Unknown or unrecorded
    Owned until: 1867
    Disposal method: Unknown or unrecorded
Object view = Humanities
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