Sekhmet Statue card

Sekhmet Statue


On display

Sekhmet has a sun disc on her head as she was the daughter of the sun god, Ra. Her name means “the powerful one”. She was the goddess of destruction and healing, and protected the King from illness and enemies; she had a fiery temper too. Before the Second World War the statue was on display in the Main Hall of the Museum and was shattered when the Museum was bombed in 1941. The surviving fragments were put back together in 1995. Both arms below the shoulder are missing, including the left hand that clasped an ankh hieroglyph meaning ‘life’. Presented to the Museum by Joseph Mayer in 1867. Mayer had purchased it from the collection formed by George Annesley, 9th Viscount Valentia, 2nd Earl of Mountnorris, (1770-1844) at the sale held at Arley Castle in December 1852. Lot. 428 in the Sotheby's 1852 sale catalogue. Mayer gave £85 for it and the other Sekhmet statue (no. M11809) according to a priced catalogue. Viscount Valentia purchased the object from Henry Salt who acquired it between 1824-7. It is likely that this statue originated at the mortuary temple of the 18th Dynasty pharaoh Amenhotep III (1390-1352 BC) in Western Thebes.