- Gallery Text
Women in mummy portraits usually wear colorful clothing, and it may be that the white garment refers to the professional orientation of the deceased as a scribe. The band over this woman’s shoulder originates in the broad purple stripe (clavus) worn by Roman senators, but is more a sign of cultural allegiance to Rome than a mark of office here.
- Identification and Creation
- Object Number
- Mummy Portrait of a Woman
- Work Type
- c. 200 CE
- Creation Place: Ancient & Byzantine World, Africa, Fayum (Egypt)
- Roman Imperial period
- Persistent Link
Level 3, Room 3740, Ancient Mediterranean and Near Eastern Art, Ancient Egypt: Art for Eternity
View this object's location on our interactive map
- Physical Descriptions
- Tempera on hardwood
- 32 cm h x 19 cm w x 0.5 cm d (12 5/8 x 7 1/2 x 3/16 in.)
- Theodor Graf Collection, Vienna. [Sotheby's, London, 27 July 1931, cat. no. 22], sold; to [Brummer Gallery, New York, 1931-1932], sold; to Mrs. John D. Rockefeller, Jr, New York, (1932-1939), gift; to the Fogg Art Museum, 1939.
- Acquisition and Rights
- Credit Line
- Harvard Art Museums/Arthur M. Sackler Museum, Gift of Mrs. John D. Rockefeller, Jr.
- Accession Year
- Object Number
- Asian and Mediterranean Art
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- Publication History
Sotheby's London: Catalogue of Egyptian, Greek, Roman, South American, Arabian, and Indian Antiquities, auct. cat., Sotheby's (London, England, July 27, 1931), no. 22, 1.
Dr. Heinrich Drerup, Die Datierung der Mumienportrats, Schoningh (Paderborn, 1933), 44, and 62, pl 17a
"Pagan and Christian Egypt: Egyptian Art from the First to the Tenth Century A.D." (1941), Brooklyn Museum, p. 16, no. 5, ill.
Walters Art Gallery, Early Christian and Byzantine Art, exh. cat., The Trustees of the Walters Art Gallery (Baltimore, MD, 1947), no. 674, pl. 87.
George M. A. Hanfmann, Roman Art: A Modern Survey of the Art of Imperial Rome, New York Graphi Society (Greenwich CT, New York and London, 1964), pg 312, pl. 49
Klaus Parlasca, Mumienportrats und verwandte Denkmaler, Franz Steiner Verlag (Wiesbaden, Germany, 1966), pg 270
David Thompson, Mummy Portraits in the J. Paul Getty Museum, J. Paul Getty Museum (Malibu, CA, 1982), p. 21
Rosario Pintaudi, El-Fayyum, F.M. Ricci (Milan, Italy, 1985), p. 147.
Ioli Kalavrezou, Byzantine Women and Their World, exh. cat., Harvard University Art Museums (Cambridge, MA, 2003), p. 242/fig. 134
[Reproduction Only], Persephone, (Fall 2006)., p. 40.
- Exhibition History
Early Christian and Byzantine Art, Baltimore Museum of Art, Baltimore, 04/24/1947 - 07/01/1947
Roman Gallery Installation (long-term), Harvard University Art Museums, Cambridge, 09/16/1999 - 01/20/2008
Byzantine Women and Their World, Harvard University Art Museums, Cambridge, 10/25/2002 - 04/28/2003
Gods in Color: Painted Sculpture of Classical Antiquity, Harvard University Art Museums, Cambridge, 09/22/2007 - 01/20/2008
HAA 1 Survey Course (S421): Landmarks of World Art and Architecture [Spring 2009], Harvard Art Museums/Arthur M. Sackler Museum, Cambridge, 02/12/2009 - 05/10/2009
32Q: 3740 Egyptian, Harvard Art Museums, Cambridge, 11/16/2014 - 01/01/2050
- Subjects and Contexts
Google Art Project
- Related Works
This record has been reviewed by the curatorial staff but may be incomplete. Our records are frequently revised and enhanced. For more information please contact the Division of Asian and Mediterranean Art at email@example.com