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The next of the sepulchral stelæ is one of limestone, nineteen inches high by eleven broad, and is No. 1275 of the Hartwell Catalogue. There are four lines of horizontal hieroglyphics, above a man whose hands are uplifted in supplication, and making an offering of cakes, lotus, and a goose to Osiris, as the all-powerful sovereign God: this supplicant represents the deceased Pepi, attendant of the “prayer-room” (temple?), and in the act of worship. (See plate VIII.) Lines of vertical hieroglyphics separate the subjects.
In the lower compartment are the wife, mother, and sister of Pepi, each of them holding a lotus-flower and smelling it: this is among very numerous evidences that the lotus-lily was a general favourite with the ladies, and Solomon's hymeneal canticle to the Egyptian princess alludes to this national taste, making her say
-“ My beloved is gone down into his garden, to the bed of spices, to feed in the gardens, and to gather lilies. I am my beloved's, and my beloved is mine; he feedeth among the lilies.”—Solom. Song, vi. 2, 3. (See page 182.) This stela is very singular, on account of its tints. The inscriptions are written in blue characters; he who prays has blue hair, with a blue collar and a white girdle; and Osiris, attired in white, is depicted with a blue face and hands, standing on a blue suggestum; the ladies are represented in white clothing, with brown features and blue hair; the goose of sacrifice is white, with a blue head; one of the dedicated cakes is white and the other yellow; and the vase has some red liquor in it. Two of the hieroglyphics at the beginning, which appear to be cakes, are tinted with yellow.
No. 1276 is a smaller stela than the above, being only twelve inches in length by nine in breadth, and is also of compact limestone, elegantly sculptured. It represents the deceased and his wife standing in the attitude of adoration, and making an offering of a lotus, cakes, and other articles to Osiris, who is standing in a recess (vaor), or shrine. In the lower compartment are two brothers and two sisters of the deceased, with inscriptions around them, and there are six rows of vertical hieroglyphics over the worshippers and their offering. This is also a tinted tablet, the defunct lady being red, with black hair, the men below red, and the sisters brownish.
The next funereal slab is of limestone, twenty-two inches long and thirteen inches broad, which is No. 1277 of the Catalogue. It is rather complicated in its details: the deceased is represented on both sides of the central portion invoking two couchant foxes or jackalls-guardians of the tropics. On the right side of the lower part is the deceased, sitting, worshipped by his kneeling mother or sister; and on the right side are his wife and his father, before a table covered with offerings. The whole is thickly sprinkled with attributes and hieroglyphics, among which is the consecrated cake with a cross (sacred bread, hot-cross bun ?). This was one of the articles of Mr. Barker's collection, and sold by Sotheby and Son, in March 1833.
It is evidently in commemoration of a person of some note at the time it was cut, but as his story is unsung, it of course remains unknown
Vain was the chief's, the hero's pride,
No. 1284 is an exquisite specimen of a memorial, which is hardly so rare as it is complete and curious. It is a small pyramid of limestone, about two feet high, with its four sides elaborately engraved, the two opposite of each being very nearly alike; that is, Nos. 1 and 2, and 3 and 4, are in strong resemblance, though the inscriptions differ. On two sides we see the recumbent jackall seated on an altar or tomb; but in one case it is open and in the other closed. These animals are watching a taper, the emblem of the soul, a symbol of Anubis as the conductor of souls. Below the jackall is a female figure kneeling on her right knee, and in the act of adoration. There are two columns of perpendicular hieroglyphics in front of one female, and three in front of the other; one column of inscription above the jackall is very nearly similar on each side. The two other sides of the pyramid each bear two apes in the position of prayer, but they vary in one having two columns of vertical hieroglyphics, and the other three, between the apes. Over them, and occupying the central part of the pyramidal face, is the bari, or sacred boat, in which is a scarabæus supporting the globe; and above it a column of inscription reaches to the apex. The boat does not exactly represent the funereal barge which was used to convey the mummies to the tombs, and which bore the sacred eye of Osiris on the bow, as with the Roman galleys in afterages, and the Chinese joncks and Mediterranean spironare to the present hour;
, but the symbols it carries shew the importance of its character, and are also typical of an aquatic people ; for, while the Egyptians thus place the supreme attributes in a boat, the Greeks would have disposed of thein otherwise, as, for instance, their Apollo, or Sun, in a car. The following wood engravings represent two of the sides of this fine little pyramid :
It may safely be presumed that there were offerings of small pyramids --symbols of what Sir Thomas Browne calls “those wild enormities of ancient magnanimity”—in funereal rites, since the hieroglyphical inscriptions expressly indicate that they were thus consecrated. Mr. Cullimore suggests that they illustrate the connexion of the principle of the great pyramidal piles with the a pocatastasis, or great cycle of renovation, mythologically indicated by the life of Apis : and the same diligent Orientalist makes this remarkable mention of one of the symbols before us—“On one face of the pyramid appears the solar or mundane boat, having in it the globe, or emblem of the world, accompanied by the scarabæus, the emblem of the sun, of life, and generation, to denote that the voyage through the upper hemisphere—that of light and life—is here depicted; while on the opposite face is the same boat and globe, without the scarabaan symbol, representing the voyage through the lower hemisphere—that of darkness and death-in the same way that it appears on the funereal representations in general.”
We now come to No. 1619 of the IIartwell Collection : this is a singular sedent statuette of a hierogrammist, or royal secretary, with a good countenance, and so elaborate a head-dress that it was considered to represent a female. From the hieroglyphics inscribed thereon, however, it is pronounced to be in commemoration of Sabacotph, an officer in the company of archers. The figure is of limestone from Gorua in the Thebaid, and the position is supposed to be peculiar to this class of Pharaoh's subjects; but it is one of those puzzling crouching representations of which various examples are to be found in the British Museum. I am not aware that any mummies have ever been found in this attitude, so placed by the early Egyptians, though dried bodies are found thus contracted in Teneriffe and Peru; from which last country, while writing this, a specimen has been received by the United Service Institution, swathed in cloth, and accompanied with ornaments and Indian corn, as with the Mizraimites. Should any such forms be hereafter discovered in the Valley of the
. Nile, it would add another singular ethnological coincidence between the old and the new worlds, to the many which are known to exist. Figures in this position may be seen in Lord Kingsborough’s plates of the Antiquities of Mexico; and in the Selden collection of MSS. in the Bodleian Library (Arch. Seld. A. Rot. 3 Cat. MSS. Angl. 3207) there are five individuals in nearly the same attitude. These vestiges of similarity are certainly wonderful; especially when coupled with the pyramidal style of architecture of men so widely separated, their tenure and barter of property, their hieroglyphic or picture writings, their uncompounded colour paintings, their human icons with animals' heads, their belief in a triune God, their aversion to red hair, their established distinction of ranks and separation of professions, their worship of the flamingo and ibis, their similarity of taste in the Keramic art,* their manufacture of paper from vegetable substances, and their ignorance of coined money, though using gold and silver ornaments in profusion. (See pages 181 and 184.) Indeed the resemblance between these people is in every way striking. Sir Thomas Phillipps shewed me, at Middle Hill, a manuscript history of “ Nueva España, por Fr. Diego Duran,” in which is the representation, from a very ancient Mexican drawing, of the removal of a huge block of stone by a host of men hauling at long ropes, exactly in the style of those in Rosellini's drawings of similar operations in ancient Egypt. The title to it is, “Cap. 66.—De como mandó
Montezuma buscar la mayor piedra que se hallase para el sacrificio del desollamiento y de lo que en traella à Mexico sucedio." Nor can we contemplate the
* This is shewn in a great variety of urns and pottery, among which may be instanced the double or yoked bottle (bijugué), and the facial vases. In the summer of this year (1850), Mr. N. N. Solly, of Port Madoc, shewed me a large drawing of a “jug” that had been found in 1828 in one of the haacas or ancient tombs at Truxillo in Peru, the taste of which is so identical with some I disinterred in Magna Græcia, that I requested a copy for the Society of Antiquaries. The following miniature representations may serve to shew the Peruvian vase, with two Greek ones which I presented to the United Service Institution in Whitehall Yard