Cosmetic Spoon



The handle is in the form of a leopard which bites and holds in its forepaws an acanthus leaf that forms the bowl of the spoon. The ribs of the leaf are carved in relief and the spots of the animal are indicated by incision as are the eyes, nose, paws, tail markings and a thick collar worn around the neck which implies that the leopard is a pet. There are cracks running through the leaf and some chips of wood are lost. A similar spoon in the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, was found in a domestic context at the palace of Amenhotep III at Malqata, and it is on the basis of this parallel that a late 18th Dynasty date is assigned. The purpose of these spoons is discussed by Rita Freed in 'Egypt's Golden Age' (Boston, 1982) p. 207. Egyptian Museum catalogue (1852): No. 804 Spoon – sacrificial – beautifully carved, and made of the ancient acacia wood. The bowl is in shape of a leaf, and the handle is formed of a leopard, holding the leaf in its mouth. Gatty Slip (1873) : Wooden spoon made in shape of a leaf, held in the mouth of forepaws of a leopard. Labelled ‘804’. Catalogue Card (1910) : Carved spoon of wood, 0.222 by 0.055 m. Spoon in form of a leaf held in jaws nd forepaws of a panther. Period: 18 Dyn. Technique: Fine. Preservation: Bowl cracked.