Statue of the Goddess Sekhmet-Mut

Ancient Egypt, Mid 14th century BC

This extremely large temple statue of the Ancient Egyptian goddess Sekhmet-Mut, carved from black granite, is one of the masterpieces of the Hermitage collection. Sekhmet sits majestically on a cube-shaped throne with a high back. Originally the goddess's head was crowned by a solar disc with a sacred cobra. Her lion's mane passes smoothly into the locks of a three-part wig. The thin body fitted into a narrow dress is straight as a rod. The goddess's hands lay calmly on her knees, while in her left is the ankh, symbol of life, in the form of a large loop tied with a bow. On the front of the throne are two columns of carved hieroglyphs containing the titles of Pharaoh Amenhotep III. Sekhmet - literally "the Mighty" - occupied a place of honour amongst the gods. The terrible lioness was honoured as goddess of the burning sun and the anger of war and was considered to be the daughter of the god Ra. In the 2nd millennium BC, the capital of Ancient Egypt was moved from Memphis to Thebes in the south, and the goddess Sekhmet came to be identified with the local goddess Mut (in Ancient Egpytian mut means "mother"), who was depicted as a female kite. The Theban Triad of Gods included Amun-Ra, his wife Sekhmet-Mut and their son, the god of the moon Khonsa. This Triad was thought to live in the complex in Thebes now known as the Karnak Temple. The statue came from the Temple of Sekhmet-Mut, originally adorned with 574 two-metre high depictions of the goddess. It was found in the ruins of this sanctuary by the famous Russian traveller and writer Abraham Norov (1795-1869), who purchased it.


Statue of the Goddess Sekhmet-Mut




200 cm

Archaeological site:

Temple of Sekhmet-Mut, Thebes

Inventory Number:





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