About this object

Trough of a wooden mummiform inner coffin with painted decoration inscribed for a 'chantress of Amun' called Aset (Isis). It was damaged by fire during the wartime bombing of Liverpool in May 1941 and a lot of the original decoration has gone. In the 1852 catalogue of Joseph Mayer's collection the coffin is described as being "richly painted, representing a funeral procession". Descriptions from record cards made before 1941 described the coffin trough as being painted on the outside with "vignettes and religious texts and frieze of uraei and feathers, it was obviously once very richly decorated and coloured. Inside at the head end was a Ba-bird with wings spread and figures of the god Shu on either side. The whole of the back and sides was covered with religious scenes". All of this is now very damaged and only the right-hand side of the box retains it's decoration to any extent. Here there are a series of eight panels separated by double bands of inscription. The text is in each instance the same, though some lines are better preserved than others. The underside of the coffin is supported by four wooden struts passing across the width, added more recently in the 19th century. Along the thickness of the trough were originally four mortise holes; one is broken away and another is now replaced with modern repair work (plaster?). Conserved in 2017 for display.

Object specifics

  • Type
  • Culture
    Third Intermediate Period
  • Artist/Maker
  • Place made
    Africa: Northern Africa: Egypt: Thebes
  • Date made
    1069 BC - 945 BC
  • Materials
  • Location
    World Museum, Level 3, Ancient Egypt Gallery
  • Acquisition
    Gift of Joseph Mayer
  • Collector
    Joseph Sams
  • Place collected
    Africa: Northern Africa: Egypt: Thebes
  • Date collected
    1850 before
  • Measurements
    292 mm x 490 mm x 1870 mm x 32 kg
  • Note
    Contained mummy M13998 of a later date (probably Late Period);
  • Related people
    Joseph Mayer ( Previous owner); Joseph Sams ( Collector, previous owner)

Explore related


  • 21st Dynasty Coffins from Thebes. Chronological and Typological Studies

    Niwinski, Andrzej

    Author: Niwinski, Andrzej
    Publisher: P von Zabern
    Date: 1988
    Description: Theben Bd. 5.

  • Catalogue of the Egyptian Museum, No. VII, Colquitt Street, Liverpool

    Mayer, Joseph

    Author: Mayer, Joseph
    Publisher: Joseph Mayer
    Date: 1852
    Description: Joseph Mayer published a catalogue of his collection in 1852, whilst it was at his Egyptian Museum in Colquitt Street. This is before he donated his collection to the Liverpool Free Public Museums in 1867 so his entries do not include the accession numbers that the objects now bear.

  • The Role of the Chantress in Ancient Egypt

    Onstine, Suzanne Lynn

    Author: Onstine, Suzanne Lynn
    Publisher: University of Toronto
    Date: 2001
    Description: A thesis submitted in conformity with the requirements for the degee of Ph.D. in the Graduate Department of Near and Middle Eastern Civilizations, University of Toronto. Published online: http://www.collectionscanada.gc.ca/obj/s4/f2/dsk3/ftp04/NQ58632.pdf


Previous owners

  • Joseph Mayer

    Owned from: 1850
    How acquired: Purchased
    Owned until: 1867
    Disposal method: Donation
  • Joseph Sams

    Owned from: Unknown or unrecorded
    How acquired: Purchased
    Owned until: 1850
    Disposal method: Sold
Object view = Humanities
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