Egypt (Thebes), Third Intermediate Period, early Dynasty 22, 930-880 B.C.E.
Cartonnage and mummy, Length: 167 cm (65 3/4 in.)
Hay Collection—Gift of C. Granville Way 1872, MFA #72.4820c
Photos © Joan Ann Lansberry 2014
"This beautifully painted coffin contains the body of the Songstress of Amen, Tabes, wife of the Barber of Amen, Nes-Ptah. The emphasis of the elaborate painted design is on the magical protection of the deceased. The decoration follows a pattern very common on cartonnage coffins of this period, including the depiction of deities in the form of birds, sheathing the body with their wings in a protective gesture.
"X-rays and CT scans indicate that Tabes was a relatively young woman at death. The examination identified no major illnesses, though Tabes appears to have suffered from dental disease. She was elaborated mummified and provided with a set of amulets and a heart scarab, which were placed beneath her wrappings." (From info card)