An Egyptian wood and bronze standing Ibis,
Lot 17
An Egyptian bronze and wood standing Ibis
Sold for £189,250 (US$ 323,823) inc. premium
Auction Details
An Egyptian bronze and wood standing Ibis
Lot Details
A sizeable Egyptian bronze and wood standing Ibis
Late Period, 26th Dynasty, circa 600-332 B.C.
The neck and beak, legs and tail feathers in bronze, the body in wood, shown striding forward with its left leg advanced, incised details of the scaling and joints on the clawed feet, legs and tail feathers, the neck curving elegantly, the gullet finely modelled and the long beak gently tapering towards the tip, decorated with incised striations, the eyelids shaped around the inlaid obsidian eyes, the remains of a mummified ibis in the gesso painted body, the two parts of the body held together by the bronze tail which acts as a clasp, tangs extending from the underside of the feet, 17¼in. (44cm.) high and long, the gesso missing and flaking from parts of the body, with a black granite stand and fitted Oriental style cloth box, some wear

Footnotes

  • Provenance:
    The Property of a private collector, who purchased the ibis from the Cairo Museum in 1957 or 1958

    X-ray analysis reveals the contents of the wood body as containing the mummified remains of a bird, presumably an ibis with its head bent back on its body. This analysis clearly reveals the tang of the bronze neck sunk deep into the wooden body. Similarly, the legs are shown to join and form a v-shape inside the body, then extend into a tang for extra security

    Literature:
    Although wood and bronze Ibis are well known in antiquity, the standing variety is exceptionally rare, they are more commonly depicted squatting. For a less fine squatting example with similar bronze tail section but without the inlaid eye and the detachable body with internal mummified ibis, cf. M. Page-Gasser & A.B. Wiese, Ägypten, Augenblicke der Ewigkeit (Mainz 1997), fig.169, p.255
Activities
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