Princess Merit-Amun in Tahrir Square

Nevine El-Aref , Tuesday 8 Oct 2019

A bust of the ancient Egyptian princess Merit-Amun has been put on special display in the foyer of the Egyptian Museum in Cairo’s Tahrir Square


Before leaving for its permanent exhibition at the Hurghada Museum on the Red Sea, a beautiful bust of princess Merit-Amun, an object from the treasured collection of the Egyptian Museum in Cairo’s Tahrir Square, has been put on show in a special display in the foyer, reports Nevine El-Aref.

Director-General of the Museum Sabah Abdel-Razek described the bust as an ancient Egyptian masterpiece demonstrating the full skills of its artist. It was discovered in a chapel dedicated to the princess inside the Ramesseum Temple in Thebes built by her father king Ramses II.

Merit-Amun was one of the daughters of Ramses II, who took on the role of great royal wife after the death of her mother queen Nefertari. In 1981, a colossal statue of her was found in the Upper Egyptian town of Akhmim beside a similar statue of her father at the entrance to his temple.

The bust on display at the Egyptian Museum depicts Merit-Amun wearing a long wig with a diadem on her forehead featuring two cobras wearing the white and red crowns, the symbols of Upper and Lower Egypt. On top of her head there is a crown surrounded by a diadem, decorated all the way round with a frieze of uraeus with solar disks.

 She is wearing earrings, a broad collar, and a bracelet on her left hand, in which she holds a musical instrument called a menat. The painted decoration of the bust is very well preserved.

A menat was an ancient Egyptian musical instrument used on the occasion of feasts held in honour of female deities, and it produces a loud noise while shaken.

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