A shabti made of Egyptian faience with details painted, for Hori. He is shown mummiform with only his hands and head protruding, wearing a short wig with sidelock, identifying him as sem priest, a title that was usually worn by the high priest of Ptah. The figure holds the usual agricultural implements in his hands and carries a seed bag on his back. He also wears a broad collar, consisting of several layers or strings. The text on the shabti informs us about the titles and name of the owner: The illuminated one, the Osiris, the sem priest, the greatest of the directors of the craftsmen, Hori.
There were several high priests called Hori, usually indicated in Egyptology by Roman numerals (although various numbering systems exist). Hori I (El-Sharkawy 2008, p. 27, no. 46) lived at the end of the 18th dynasty. Hori II (ibid., p. 29-30, no. 65) was the son of prince and sem-priest Khaemwaset, and the grandson of Ramesses II; he became high priest of Ptah in year 65/66 of that king. Hori III (ibid., p. 30, no. 68) was the son of the vizier and high priest Khaemwaset, the son of the mayor and vizier Hori; he lived in dynasty 19-20. Hori IV (ibid., p. 30-31, no. 72) was the son of the mayor of Memphis Ptahmes, who also carried the title of his father next to several other titles. He lived either at the end of the 18th dynasty or in the late 19th-early 20th dynasty.
For the persons named Hori see also Maystre, p. 142 and p. 286-290 (nos. 86-92). For the name see Ranke I, p. 251, no. 8.
The title “greatest of the directors of the craftsmen” (wr xrpw Hmwwt) indicates that this person was high priest of Ptah, the deity of Memphis who himself was the god of craftsmen and architects. For the reading of the title see El-Sharkawy 2008, note 4 on p. 36-38; 2009, p. 210 and note 1; as a title for the high priest of Ptah see idem 2009 note 2. In the new Kingdom the words were also used as a personal name (Ranke I, p. 81, no. 18).
Charles Maystre, Les grands prêtres de Ptah de Memphis (Orbis Biblicus et Orientalis, 113) (Freiburg, Schweiz, Universitätsverlag; Göttingen, Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht, 1992);
Hermann Ranke, Die ägyptischen Personennamen, Band I (Glückstadt, 1935);
Basem Samir El-Sharkawy, “A New List of the High-Priests of Ptah at Memphis till the End of the Ancient Egyptian History (332 BCE) (Part 1: Till the End of the New Kingdom)”, Abgadiyat, volume 3, 2008, p. 21-47;
Basem Samir el-Sharkawy, “The Title Wr-xrp(.w)-Hmw(.wt) as a Proper Name in the New Kingdom” in Basem Samir el-Sharkawy (ed.), The Horizon. Studies in Egyptology in Honour of M.A. Nur el-Din. Acts of the International Academic Ceremony to Honoour Professor of Egyptology M. Abd el-Halim Nur el-Din (10-12 April 2007) (Cairo, Supreme Council of Antiquities Press, 2009), p. 201-210 (p. 217-226 in the preprinted text widely available).
New Kingdom, 19th dynasty.
Height circa 13 cm.
Private collection, acquired from Gallery Drees Archeo, Brussels, 1980; therafter with Hixenbaugh Ancient Art, New York.
Intact, with some encrustation and surface wear.