About this object

A lion headed leg from a funerary bier. One of a pair; the other is in Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery, UK. The lion is standing on a platform under which is cut a stepped tenon. This would have been either located in a mortise of a cross-member which would have connected the front legs of the bier or they would have been set into a large metal drum. Behind the lion’s head is a large slot which would have accommodated the bier’s side rail. On the side of the head is a smaller mortise on which part of the tenon of the top stretcher is still present. The head is painted yellow with details in red and black. The breast is decorated in a blue/black green and red design.

Rectangular sticker with printed number 50; placed on top of a circular sticker which is placed over a rectangular sticker with ornate blue border. The tenon is marked in black ink 6860 and in blue pencil P XVII 22 (a reference to plate XVII in the 1906 auction catalogue). Wellcome registration label from 15 September 1933 says it was acquired in 1927 from H.M.M. [accession number 61345 - numbers in this range have a note on the record card saying "From H.M.M. Nov. 1927". Did Henry Wellcome acquire it direct from the 1906 de Rustafjaell sale or another auction/dealer later?

Object specifics

  • Type
  • Culture
    Ptolemaic or Romano-Egyptian
  • Artist/Maker
  • Place made
    Africa: Northern Africa: Egypt
  • Date made
    332 BC - 395 AD about
  • Materials
    Paint; Wood; Plaster
  • Location
    Item not currently on display
  • Acquisition
    Gift of the Trustees of the Wellcome Collection
  • Collector
    Robert de Rustafjaell
  • Place collected
    Africa: Northern Africa: Egypt
  • Date collected
    1927 before
  • Measurements
    450 mm x 96 mm x 125 mm
  • Related people
    Robert de Rustafjaell ( Collector, previous owner); Wellcome Historical Medical Museum ( Previous owner); Henry Solomon Wellcome ( Previous owner)

Explore related


  • Catalogue of the Collection of Egyptian Antiquities Formed in Egypt by R. de Rustafjaell Esq., Queen's Gate, SW

    Sotheby, Wilkinson & Hodge

    Author: Sotheby, Wilkinson & Hodge
    Publisher: Sotheby, Wilkinson and Hodge
    Date: 1906
    Description: Catalogue of Rober de Rustafjaell's collection sold by Messrs Sotheby, Wilkinson & Hodge at 13 Wellington Street, Strand, London, on 19, 20 and 21 December 1906.


Previous owners

Object view = Humanities
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