A shabti made of Egyptian faience with details painted, for Iyry. 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. 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, greatest of the directors of the craftsmen, Iyry, justified.
Iyry lived during the reign of Seti II (19th dynasty), see El-Sharkawy 2008, p. 30, no. 69. For this person, see also Maystre, p. 159-160 and p. 343-345 (no. 156). For the name see Ranke I, p. 10, no. 12.
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 14,8 cm.
Spanish private collection of Dr. Leopoldo Benguerel y Godó, Barcelona, acquired in London in the 1960s; thereafter with J. Bagot Arqueología, Barcelona; therafter with Hixenbaugh Ancient Art, New York.
Intact, with some encrustation and surface wear.