About this object

Mummiform shabti wearing a tripartite wig with striations added in the carving except for the lower ends of the lappets that are left plain. The arms are crossed, and the hands emerge from the shroud to hold a pair of hoes added in relief. A basket is carried behind the left shoulder. The face is very well defined. It is round in shape, and has full cheeks. The nose is a little abraded. The eyes have short cosmetic lines in shallow relief, and the eyes lids are quite fleshy. The ears are well defined. A wesekh–collar is worn across the chest comprising three rows of beads on strands. A vertical column of fairly neatly incised inscription carved in light relief, coloured in black and in between red borders, names the owner as Ra-messu–hesy. His name appears in Ranke p. 219, no. 5. Transliteration and translation of the inscription: wn Hr.k mAA.k itn dwA.k Ra anx Wsir Ra-ms-sw-Hsy mAa-xrw, "May your face be opened, that you may see the sun disk, that you may adore the sun in life, the Osiris, Ra–messu–hesy, justified".

This shabti belongs to a particularly small group known for various private individuals that are inscribed with a magical text known as the Kha–em–waset or Khamaus formula. Kha–em– waset, a son of Ramesses II, was the instigator of this unusual magical inscription that is considered to have raised ‘the owner of the shabti to a higher, divine level, and to make him a citizen, as it were, of the sacred region of Ro–setau.’ Ro–setau was originally the name for the necropolis at Memphis, Saqqara and Giza, but it eventually came to specify the entrance to the underworld that could be represented by a tomb shaft or simply a natural hole in the ground. Sokar was the principal god of Ro–setau, and although Osiris, Isis and Horus were part of the domain, it was the sun god Re through whom the deceased sought eternal existence from its life giving rays.

Object specifics

  • Type
  • Culture
    New Kingdom (Ramesside Period)
  • Artist/Maker
  • Place made
    Africa: Northern Africa: Egypt
  • Date made
    1295 BC - 1186 BC (Dynasty 19)
  • Materials
    Paint; Limestone
  • Location
    World Museum, Level 3, Ancient Egypt Gallery
  • Acquisition
    Purchased from the collections of Norwich Castle Museum
  • Collector
    Henry Rider Haggard
  • Place collected
    Africa: Northern Africa: Egypt
  • Date collected
    1925 before
  • Measurements
    205 mm x 75 mm x 53 mm
  • Note
    Was used in education sessions 1999 - 2017.
  • Related people
    Henry Rider Haggard ( Collector, previous owner); Norwich Castle Museum and Art Gallery ( Previous owner)

Explore related


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

    Andrea Davies; Dirk van der Plas (ed)

    Author: Andrea Davies; 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

  • The Shabti Collections volume 6: a Selection from World Museum, Liverpool

    Janes, Glenn

    Author: Janes, Glenn
    Publisher: Olicar House Publications
    Date: 2016
    Description: Lavishly illustrated catalogue of inscribed and excavated shabtis from the collection of World Museum, Liverpool, with a six page foreword by the curator, Ashley Cooke, describing the history of the collection . For more details visit the publisher's website: http://www.shabtis.com/liverpoolcatalogue.php


Previous owners

Object view = Humanities
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