New York, NY (PRWEB) October 09, 2014
Hixenbaugh Ancient Art announces the recent acquisition of over thirty ancient objects. Included in new acquisitions are 23 New Kingdom servant figures (called Shabtis or Ushabtis) and 12 ancient cylinder seals.
Ushabtis, ancient Egyptian mummiform statuettes, have long fascinated Egyptologists and collectors of ancient art. The ushabti’s appeal manifests itself on multiple levels. They are visually captivating and unmistakably Egyptian in appearance. They contain text in the form of a spell which provide an introduction into the ancient Egyptian Hieroglyphic system of writing. They were made specifically for ancient individuals whose name is inscribed on the ushabti providing the collector with a direct link to our collective past.
The shabti was first introduced in the Middle Kingdom during the 12th Dynasty but its function changed as Egyptian society transformed. Middle Kingdom shabtis were meant to act as substitutes for the deceased in case their mummy was destroyed. During the Second Intermediate Period burial practices changed, inscribed simple wooden figures called shawabtis (after the Egyptian word for wood, shawab) began to be placed in tombs. During the New Kingdom, shabtis assumed a new role as servant figures for the deceased. Shabtis were provided with a variety of agricultural equipment and functioned as assistants for their owners in the afterlife. By the Third Intermediate Period, the number of shabtis placed in the tomb was set at 401 (365 worker shabtis and 36 overseer shabtis). During the Late Period the tomb figures became known as ushabtis (‘answerers’), these figures represented servants who would magically answer when called upon to perform agricultural duties for the Pharaoh (in the form of Osiris) in the Afterlife. Ushabtis were made in the workshops of temple priests. Their main function was to ensure the individuals comfort and freedom from daily labor in the next life.
Among Hixenbaugh’s recent acquisitions are Ushabtis of Crown Prince Khaemwaset. Khaemwaset was the son of Pharaoh Ramesses II. Khaemwaset has been referred to as the first Egyptologist for his documented interest in Egypt’s Old Kingdom monuments which were by his time already over 1000 years old. He restored many of these early monuments in and around Giza. Many, like the 5th Dynasty Pyramid of Unas at Saqqara, bear inscriptions detailing the work he had done. He held several important priestly titles including the Sem Priest of Ptah at Memphis. However, he become Pharaoh as he died before his long-lived father.
Crown Prince Khaemwaset’s ushabtis and the ushabtis of several other Egyptian royals (Isetnofret, General Ramesses, Hori, Huy and Henuttawy) as well as many other new items are available at our New York gallery (Tuesday – Saturday 11am – 6pm) and can be viewed on our web site (http://www.hixenbaugh.net).
ABOUT HIXENBAUGH ANCIENT ART
Hixenbaugh Ancient Art Ltd, located on the Upper East Side of Manhattan, is dedicated to handling fine authentic antiquities (Roman, Greek, Judean, Near Eastern, Ancient European, Ancient Mediterranean, Pre-Columbian and Egyptian Art). All of the pieces we handle are legally acquired, in complete accordance with US and international regulations and laws concerning the import and sale of ancient objects. All objects are guaranteed genuine and as described. Hixenbaugh Ancient Art is a member of the Art and Antique Dealers League of America (AADLA), the Confederation Internationale des Negociants en Oeuvres d'Art (CINOA), the Appraisers Association of America (AAA), and the International Association of Dealers in Ancient Art (IADAA).
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At Hixenbaugh Ancient Art, we believe that responsible collecting of antiquities is not only a pleasurable pursuit and wise investment, but an important responsibility. Today's collectors are custodians of the past, links in a chain, preserving the past for future generations by passing their collections on to their heirs, reselling them to eager collectors, or donating them to museums. In doing so, the collector of ancient art reaps the many benefits of acquiring truly unique and thought provoking objects that have come down to us from the ancients, whose influences pervade every aspect of the modern world.
If you would like more information about this topic contact Robert O’Donnell or Randall Hixenbaugh at (212) 861-9743 or info(AT)hixenbaugh.net.